Along clear his “good name” by knowing the whole

Topic: LifeHero
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Last updated: January 12, 2020

Along with Dorian’s moral decline, his extreme beauty also served as an influence on people’s judgment and actions, especially on Basil Hallward, a renowned painter. Early in the novel, Basil had the opportunity to paint a portrait of Dorian for which he considers his artistic “masterpiece.” In our society, art generates judgment for those who view it and similarly people are judged too. It is arguable that a person is most likely to give the benefit of the doubt to someone who is neat, clean, charming, and beautiful.

The same principles apply to Dorian, which Basil clearly proves when he said;’At least, I can’t believe them when I see you. Sin is a thing that writes itself across a man’s face. It cannot be concealed… But you, Dorian, with your pure, bright, innocent face, and your marvellous untroubled youth— I can’t believe anything against you.’ (Wilde 250)Here Basil reveals his willingness to ignore the outrageous and vile rumours about Dorian despite the sufficient amount of evidence given to him because of his adoration for Dorian’s pretty face.

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Basil aligns Dorian’s appearance with his actions; he aims it both to be equally as important, good, and beautiful. With Basil’s clouded judgement, his actions were also swayed.Before Basil was headed to start a new art studio in Paris, he felt the need to visit Dorian and help clear his “good name” by knowing the whole truth. Basil was brave enough to risk a new and prosperous life when he said, “I shall come with you, Dorian, if you wish it. I see I have missed my train. That makes no matter… All I want is a plain answer to my question.

” (Wilde, 257) Basil shows that he does not care about what happens to him and his future, he just wants to see the real Dorian and the painting. His visit in the attic then turns into his own gruesome murder because of his insistence despite Dorian’s refusal on being helped.  It is true that he could not have known the outcome of his idolatry is death, but if he could have been smart enough to see that Dorian is a lost cause and that he could have just walked away as easily as he walked in. Basil remains blinded by his beauty that he is no longer able to comprehend that Dorian has been corrupted. Had not Basil been affected by Dorian’s beauty, he could have remained a man who understood the difference between right and wrong and remained clear with his own judgment in life.

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