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A Summary of Oscar Wilde's A Picture of Dorian Gray, by ChatGPT and Copy Writes Copy

Updated: Aug 8, 2023

An AI experiment...

Before we start...

This post was created as an experiment to see how ChatGPT can be 'free education'.

The idea was inspired by a LinkedIn post by Zain Kahn aka 'The AI Guy, which listed 10 Powerful Prompts to Accelerate Your Learning.

So, we took one of the prompts from Zain's list, put it into ChatGPT and generated the summary you're about to read.

Once generated, we added a bit of our magic here and there, but kept it as close as possible to the original ChatGPT copy.

Check out Zain's original LinkedIn post here, and please let us know how well you think ChatGPT did in summarizing this classic novel.

The Prompt

"Summarize the book 'A Picture of Dorian Gray' by Oscar Wilde, and give me a list of the most important learnings and insights."

ChatGPT's response (with a little editing by Copy Writes Copy).

A Picture of Dorian Gray is a novel by Oscar Wilde, first published in 1890. The story follows the life of Dorian Gray, a young and beautiful man living in late 19th-century London, who becomes the subject of a painting by the artist Basil Hallward. Dorian becomes obsessed with his own beauty and wishes to remain young and handsome forever, while the portrait ages and shows the effects of his corrupt lifestyle.

The novel explores themes such as the corrupting influence of beauty and pleasure, the dangers of pursuing hedonistic desires, the consequences of denying one's true nature, and the hypocrisy of Victorian society.

Some of the key insights and lessons from the book include:

1. Beauty can be both a blessing and a curse.

While Dorian Gray's beauty initially brings him admiration and opportunities, it eventually becomes a burden that leads him down a path of corruption and destruction.

2. The pursuit of pleasure and hedonism can have dangerous consequences.

Dorian's desire for new experiences and sensations ultimately leads him to commit terrible acts, including murder.

3. The consequences of denying one's true nature can be severe.

Dorian tries to suppress his darker impulses and maintain his public image as a respectable gentleman, but his true nature eventually emerges and leads to his downfall.

4. Society's expectations and norms can be stifling and hypocritical.

The characters in the novel often behave in ways that contradict their supposed moral values, and Dorian is able to manipulate and deceive them because of their own moral failings.

5. The power of art to reveal truths about human nature.

The portrait of Dorian Gray serves as a metaphor for the hidden aspects of his character that he tries to conceal from society, and ultimately exposes the corruption and evil within him.

Our conclusion

As true admirers of Oscar Wilde, and A Picture of Dorian Gray, we think ChatGPT did ok with this one. However, it is generic, and doesn't offer any new or relevant insights.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments!

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