Site design and content by
Travis Currit, University of Utah

Oscar Wilde, on trial for indecency, steadfastly refused exile in a foreign land as a means to avoid prison. Only a few years earlier, however, he had deliberately sought out a linguistic exile, writing Salomé in a foreign tongue.

 

Though today, Salomé is read and produced mainly in translation, the language of the play is not an incidental effect; it is the centerpiece of a web of French cultural and literary influences that Wilde read, copied, and incorporated into a pastiche all his own.

 

This page explores the tangled birth of this play, highlighting throughout the larger context of intense interborrowings between Great Britain and the Continent at this time.