Lady Windermere's Fan Criticism

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Wilde's Lady Windermere's Fan garnered much popular and critical controversy on its debut at the St. James Theatre in February 20, 1892. The audience was filled to capacity with the literary stars of the time: Frank Harris, Henry James, actress Lillie Langtry, and a host of critics.

However, according to Vyvyan Holland in the introduction toThe Complete Works of Oscar Wilde, Wilde caused a furor of resentment when he came onto the stage with a cigarette in his gloved hand and his signature green carnation in his lapel and told the audience,

Ladies and Gentlemen. I have enjoyed this evening immensely. The actors have given us a charming rendition of a delightful play, and your appreciation has been most intelligent. I congratulate you on the great success of your performance, which persuades me that you think almost as highly of the play as I do.

The reviews the next morning...

(read more from the Critical Overview section)

This section contains 480 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Lady Windermere's Fan Study Guide
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Lady Windermere's Fan from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.