“The Importance of Being Earnest” is a play written by Oscar Wilde originates from its comedic and thematic immensity from the way in which it overturns the values of daily life. This play is an intelligent satire of the Victorian society. You can read the constant pokes of fun at conventionally serious topics like love, death, and religion, while simultaneously handling inconsequentialities. The circumstance in which Oscar Wilde was writing was characterized by Victorian values of its time. The era was named after Queen Victoria of England, who reigned from 1837 to 1901, which saw expanded riches, political strength and strict cultural standards. The principles of conduct that was created during this time affected one’s social standing, and how individuals should carry themselves in a socially adequate manner. During the Victorian Period, it was hard to differentiate between what conduct was approved among the different classes.
In the Victorian Era, women were seen as vulnerable and weak, however they were more nurturing than a man was. Women were expected to run the family household like cleaning and raising the kids. However, Men were observed as grounded and stronger. Men were considered more qualified to run and manage businesses and governmental offices. Each gender role had a strict arrangement of expectations that dictated how each gender was viewed and how they were expected to behave.
Class-division was especially clear during this time, from the haves and the have nots. This era was also known for the expansion in industry, many white collar class families were beginning to move into higher society. To do as you were expected to do was a large social pressure, the need to adjust themselves in speech and behavior was such a huge pressure that the male characters felt they had to lie to fit in. In contrast, if an individual was from the lower classes were seen as ‘deservingly poor’ and were dealt with cruelly and were dismissed easily. The viewpoint was that they were in poverty as a result of bad decisions.
Society not just influences the manner in which family members and friends are to be held, but in addition, society influences your romantic interests and marriages. Cecily a character in this satire is a young woman who is being courted by Alegrnon, she boldly says “I pity a poor married woman whose husband is not called Ernest” (Wilde, 1895). She speaks to how a large portion of the young girls during the Victorian Era prioritized names and titles before how a man will treat a woman in marriage.
This play has many examples of behavioral standards and class divisions. A light is shred on these expectations and how ridiculous they can be. As an example Algernon and Lift feel they need to make up phony identities to portray themselves as worthy and to seem as a prefect image of what society wants them to be. Event invitations and formal parties shaped their social lives, and we discover how important it was for them in the play. Algernon even expresses that Jack is careless because he did not send Algernon a dinner invitation to Lady Bracknell’s home. He describes Jacks actions as unwise and annoying but both Algernon and Jack are similar since both parallel to each other. jack lives a double life while Algernon uses a pretend friend to avoid social obligations.
In the Victorian Era, it was critical to wed inside your own social class and if possible to gain riches through this marriage. Lady Bracknell is self-righteous and inferring, She demands to be obeys. Lady Bracknell disapproves and is dismissive towards Algernon when he announces he is engaged to Cecily.
In any case, when Lady Bracknell discovers that Cecile is about to inherit of large inheritance, she changes her mind in a comedic way. This shows us how distorted high society’s socialites were. The significance of such shallow things makes her disregard the significance of joy rather on social status. Although Algernon is smart, He invents a fake friend named, “Bunbury,” that he uses as an excuse to get out of boring or as a scapegoat to leave social events he does wish to stay.