Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Secret ViceMasturbation in Victorian Fiction and Medical Culture$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Diane Mason

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780719077142

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719077142.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM MANCHESTER SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.manchester.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Manchester University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSO for personal use.date: 22 January 2022

‘Sin is a thing that writes itself across a man's face’ Conflicting signifiers of vice in The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Mystery of Edwin Drood

‘Sin is a thing that writes itself across a man's face’ Conflicting signifiers of vice in The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Chapter:
(p.123) 6 ‘Sin is a thing that writes itself across a man's face’ Conflicting signifiers of vice in The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Source:
The Secret Vice
Author(s):

Diane Mason

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9780719077142.003.0007

The first part of this chapter examines Oscar Wilde's construction of Dorian Gray, eponymous protagonist of The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890). The analysis illustrates the way in which opium addiction may provide a more accurate medical model in the depiction of Gray's physical deterioration. The second part returns again to Dickens to consider the case of John Jasper, the ‘solitary’, and, until now, undisputedly opium-addicted, choirmaster in the author's final, unfinished novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood (1870). Although Jasper's opium habit is fully and openly exhibited in the text, the character manifests some subtle—and, at times, not-so-subtle—nuances within the symptomatology of addiction which suggests that his drug abuse could, more correctly, be described as over written with the pathology and signifiers of self-abuse.

Keywords:   Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde, opium addiction, John Jasper, medical writing

Manchester Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.