"Oscar Wilde In America"
On January 3, 1882, Oscar Wilde arrived in New York City aboard the British ocean liner, SS Arizona. So began Wilde’s yearlong tour of North America. Over the next 300 days, the unpublished poet-writer saw more of North America than most modern day Presidential candidates. Wilde returned to London the following year a celebrity, but not just any celebrity: the very model for what we now call modern celebrity. He was famous merely for being famous. But the rules of self-promotion and manipulating the media he had pioneered in America did not make him invincible; they did the opposite. The culture of celebrity he brought to life rose up to take his—he believed his own hype.
“Oscar Wilde In America” explores where and how the tragic end of Oscar Wilde’s story began… in America.
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