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Book review: The Fall of the House of Wilde: Oscar Wilde and His Family by Emer O’Sullivan

By Alex Dean   June 2016

The Fall of the House of WildeBloomsbury, £25

Oscar Wilde was the Victorian era’s arch aesthete: beauty, he thought, was valuable for its own sake. This set him apart from the puritanism of his day. So original was Wilde that it is easy to get the impression that his genius came fully formed from within, as though he were bestowed at birth with the ability to coin witticisms.

But in her enjoyable new biography of the Irish playwright, novelist and poet, Emer O’Sullivan argues that Wilde was made by the people around him.…

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