20 for 2020 Challenge,  Show Notes

Episode 46: “The Importance of Being Earnest” Act 3

On today’s episode of The Literary Life podcast, our fearless hosts discuss Oscar Wilde’s unraveling of the tangle of plot points in Act 3 of The Importance of Being Earnest. Cindy Rollins talks about her reaction to Act 3 and how it gets resolved. Thomas Banks observes how Wilde sets up the conflict with the possibility to become a tragedy like Oedipus Rex instead of a comedy. Angelina Stanford talks about the theme of the identity quest, tokens of identity and foundlings in literature. The conversation, as in previous episodes, centers around the way Wilde pokes fun at Victorian ideals and cliches.

Listen to The Literary Life:

Commonplace Quotes:

Wear your learning like your watch, in a private pocket; and do not pull it out and strike it merely to show that you have one.

Lord Chesterfield

We must travel this path as lovers, amateurs, of the Word and of words because all things reveal themselves more truly to the eyes of love.

Stratford Caldecott

Time’s glory is to calm contending kings,

To unmask falsehood, and bring truth to light, To stamp the seal of time in aged things, To wake the morn and sentinel the night, To wrong the wronger till he render right; To ruinate proud buildings with thy hours, And smear with dust their glittering golden towers.

William Shakespeare

Easter Wings

by George Herbert

Lord, who createdst man in wealth and store,
     Though foolishly he lost the same,
           Decaying more and more,
                 Till he became
                       Most poore:
                       With thee
                 O let me rise
           As larks, harmoniously,
     And sing this day thy victories:
Then shall the fall further the flight in me.

My tender age in sorrow did beginne
     And still with sicknesses and shame.
           Thou didst so punish sinne,
                 That I became
                       Most thinne.
                       With thee
                 Let me combine,
           And feel thy victorie:
        For, if I imp my wing on thine,
Affliction shall advance the flight in me.

Book List:

Beauty in the Word by Stratford Caldecott

Oedipus Rex by Sophocles

The White Company by Arthur Conan Doyle

Brigadier Gerard by Arthur Conan Doyle

Sir Nigel by Arthur Conan Doyle

Howards End by E. M. Forster

Bleak House by Charles Dickens

A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde

An Ideal Husband by Oscar Wilde

The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis

Thanks to Our Sponsor:

This episode is brought to you by New College Franklin. We want to encourage you to check out their 2020 Spring Preview Days happening online via Zoom conferencing.

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You can find Angelina and Thomas at HouseofHumaneLetters.com, on Instagram @angelinastanford, and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ANGStanford/

Find Cindy at https://cindyrollins.net, on Instagram @cindyordoamoris and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/cindyrollins.net/. Check out Cindy’s own Patreon page also!

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One Comment

  • Veronica

    These episodes were published just as I was reading the play for English Literature, and it really helped me to understand and enjoy the play so much. I laughed and laughed and read it again.

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