Recommended Reading List

Decadence & Decay

Whether its explored with celebration or fear, decadence has long been a subject explored within dark literature. It might be a family with a dark secret or an individual that crosses the boundaries laid down by society.

One of the best examples is Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray, a man who can live out his excesses as all his aging is done by a painting. So the reality of his actions is never played out on his face. There might be a deal made to put off aging in return for power and youth, but decadence always takes its toll and in Wilde's book the picture suffers sustained decay.

In these books money and power often go hand in hand with decadence, the idle and the bored seeking sensation in a world where everything is easily bought. There is colour and drama. A sense of dangerous liberation that has its consequences, as though the balance between freedom and responsibility must always be maintained.

discuss | themes index


Go to: Homepage | Links | What's New

Recommended: Themes | Novels | Anthologies

created and maintained by ian davey.