Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde

Overview

In early 1895, the Marquess of Queensberry, the father of Wilde's young lover, Lord Alfred Douglas, left a card at Wilde's club bearing the phrase "posing somdomite." Wilde sued the Marquess for criminal libel. The defense denounced Wilde's art and literature as immoral, leading the prosecuting attorney to declare, "It would appear that what is on trial is not Lord Queensberry but Mr. Wilde's art!" In the end Queensberry was acquitted, and evidence that had been gathered against Wilde compelled the Crown to ...
See more details below
Paperback
$12.97
BN.com price
(Save 7%)$14.00 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (28) from $1.99   
  • New (10) from $7.68   
  • Used (18) from $1.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

In early 1895, the Marquess of Queensberry, the father of Wilde's young lover, Lord Alfred Douglas, left a card at Wilde's club bearing the phrase "posing somdomite." Wilde sued the Marquess for criminal libel. The defense denounced Wilde's art and literature as immoral, leading the prosecuting attorney to declare, "It would appear that what is on trial is not Lord Queensberry but Mr. Wilde's art!" In the end Queensberry was acquitted, and evidence that had been gathered against Wilde compelled the Crown to prosecute him for "gross indecency with male persons." With Wilde's arrest, his hit plays running in London's West End were forced to close, and Wilde was reduced to penury. A second trial ended in a hung jury with Wilde's impassioned defense of "the love that dare not speak its name," prompting a third trial. In the third and decisive trial, Wilde was convicted and sentenced to two years imprisonment at hard labor. He was separated forever from his wife and children, and wrote very little for the rest of his life. In addition to Wilde, Douglas and Queensberry, characters ranging from Queen Victoria to London's rent boys, to a present-day academic are assembled to explore how history is made and how it can be so timely revisited in the theatre.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

NY Newsday
Stunning...taut, shattering, yet delightfully exuberant...altogether fascinating.
NY Times
His style was his umbrella, his armor, his all-purpose defense system, and for many years it seemed to shelter Oscar Wilde most effectively. There came a moment, however, in 1895 when the playwright was betrayed by his own wit, after which he would never again be able to gain control of his life. In the absolutely gripping GROSS INDECENCY: THE THREE TRIALS OF OSCAR WILDE, written and directed with a scintillating style of its own by Moisés Kaufman, that moment is identified with such startling precision and clarity that it feels like the inexorable moment of reversal in a classic tragedy.
Time
A dazzling coup de theatre, at once compelling history and chilling human drama.
Washington Post
A triumph...truth, purity, and simplicity suffuse [this] thoroughly engrossing new play...sweeps away cobwebs and distortions, allowing complex, credible human beings to emerge from history.
Library Journal
Two-time Tony Award winner Kaufman's 1998 play about the Oscar Wilde trials is reinvigorated through this present-day live recording of the production starring Simon Templeman, Julian Sands, Peter Paige, J.B. Blanc, Dakin Matthews, Ian Ogilvy, John Vickery, Douglas Weston, and Matthew Wolf. Kaufman craftily incorporates court transcripts, newspaper accounts, and other historical documents to convey the complexity of emotion and enmity surrounding Wilde's trials and the threat his sexuality held for Victorian England. The narrative is greatly enhanced by the cast's strong performances; Templeman in particular manages, as Wilde, to oscillate deftly between the play's alternating serious emotional moments and its comedic ones. A superb bonus interview with Kaufman helps to clarify some of his creative decisions and the goals of the performance. For fans of comedies, courtroom dramas, and Wilde as well as for those wishing to understand better the view of sex and censorship in Victorian England.—Lance Eaton, Peabody, MA
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375702327
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/28/1998
  • Pages: 143
  • Sales rank: 516,847
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.35 (d)

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)