Minggu, 12 Agustus 2012




A Thesis
In Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for Undergraduate Degree (S1)
in English Language and Literature


2 0 0 6


In this thesis the writer uses a drama by Oscar Wilde, a controversial man of letters of England. This thesis focuses on the influence of the main characters’ toward plot in Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. This thesis also applies psychological aspect to analyze the main characters’ characteristics.
In writing this thesis, the writer conducts library research method to collect the data and information by using some books and internet which are related to the problem. The writer employs one method of approach namely semiotic approach. The semiotic approach is applied to analyze the character, especially the main character, plot in the drama. The writer also uses psychological approach to analyze the intrinsic aspect such as character and plot.
In The Importance of Being Earnest, Jack and Algernon, are two characters who have different characteristics. Each of them creates another character. Jack creates Ernest and Algernon creates Bunbury. Having two different names, they can do anything in two different places, in the town and in the country. In addition, the main characters experience both internal and external conflict during the drama. Mainly, both Jack and Algernon have the same internal conflict. They concern if someday their real identity would be revealed by their girls. Meanwhile Jack’s conflict toward Lady Bracknell about his origin makes him try hard to reveal it. Algernon’s undercover as Ernest at Manor House, Jack’s place, makes their real identity are finally revealed and clear up Jack’s origin through Miss Prism and Lady Bracknell’s explanation. In conclusion, the internal and external conflicts of Jack and Algernon lead to the revelation of Jack’s origin. Both internal and external conflicts influence the plots of drama, such as Algernon’s conflict toward Jack causes him to pretend as Ernest at Manor House in order that he can meet Cecily, and Jack’s internal conflict causes him to decide to vanish his created bother, Ernest.
The Importance of Being Earnest reflects a moral value dealing with human’s daily life, namely honesty. A person may do anything to reach his/her aim, but being honest is something hard to do. He/she may be smart to conceal a falsehood, but it would be revealed eventually. Hence, in any condition honesty is needed although it is painful.


1.1    Background
Human beings as one of the three alive-creatures besides animal and plant have a particular ability, which makes him so special, that dominates the others. They are able to adapt, to survive and to analyze the universe phenomenon, which make their quality of life better and better since the past. They have the whole ability because God has granted them brain. Their curiosities are so great that they learn more and more. Besides, something that makes them more special than the others is they know the way to express their feeling, thought, and emotion. Something to provide “a place” for all of the people’s expression is literature.
Literature, according to Moleong as quoted by Spadlex (2000:13), is the knowledge which is earned by human beings arise conduct and it is used to reflect and express experience.  Another opinion said that literature is one of the great creative and universal means of communicating the emotional, spiritual, or intellectual concerns of mankind (The Encyclopedia of Americana, vol. 22:559). It seems that something human being does deals literature, especially in communicating. To communicate to each other may be done by a means, such as by a letter, speaking directly, by phone etc. Even something they wrote or said, no matter what its content, could be called a literature. Well, in this life, in purpose or not in purpose, they have involved in a literature.
By using their mind they produced an expression of their feeling, emotion and thought to communicate with others. And this result of literature is called a literary work. Literary work consists of two types, namely imaginative and non-imaginative. Both literary works are basically the same, that is both are expressed aesthetically, but they have a different in expression. Imaginative type is commonly using connotative sentence to express an idea, while non-imaginative type is more realistic than the imaginative one. It uses denotative sentence.
Non-imaginative type consists of essay, criticism, biography, autobiography, history, memoir, diary, and letters. And imaginative type consists of poetry, fiction, and drama. In this paper, the writer takes a drama as an object that will be further analyzed. Drama may be defined as a work of literature or a composition which delineates life and human activity by means of presenting various actions of – and dialogues between – a group of characters (Reaske, 1966:5).
Drama was firstly introduced by a Greek philosopher Aristotle. He also identified six elements of drama that enhance not only the story telling, but also the instructive and aesthetic values of a play. The first four of the elements is plot, character, thought, and diction (relate to drama / written script). And the last two elements are music and spectacle (relate to theatre / the play in performance). (http://www.appendix%20C%20elements.html, accessed on December 21st 2004).
To analyze a drama in a study or paper there must be minimally two elements that support each other, such as plot and character. Plot and character are two significant elements and very needed in a story. Plot is the arrangement of the incidents or events in a story, which are interconnected each other, that makes a story more interesting and easy to be comprehended. Meanwhile, character is the player in the story; it may be humans, animals, or other imagination creatures created by the author.  The story contains problems appearing within the actions that make the character struggle to overcome the problems. Therefore, the writer takes a topic “The Influence of the Main Character’s Conflicts towards Plot in Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest”. The writer utilizes the characteristic of the main character and is supported by the plot to find out the influence the character’s conflicts towards the plot in the play.

1.2    Objective of the Study
After reading the story of the drama, the writer concludes that there are many conflicts found which dealing with the main character. And of course the conflicts may influence the main character. Therefore, the writer can illustrate the objective of the study into four objectives. First, to find out the Earnest Worthing’s and Algernon’s characteristics and their characterization in Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. Second, after analyzing the main characteristics, the writer tries to find out the conflicts dealing with them, either internal or external conflicts. Then third, the writer will try to elaborate the plots one by one. And finally, the writer will try to find out how far the influence of the main character’s conflicts toward the plots in The Importance of Being Earnest.
1.3    Scope of the Study
As there are many aspects in the Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, the writer makes a limitation of discussion to assure the theme of this thesis’ analysis, namely the main characters, Earnest Worthing and Algernon, and the characterization of the main characters by Oscar Wilde; the internal and external conflicts which deal with the main characters; the plots; and the influence of the main character’s conflicts toward the plots.

1.4    Method
Methods are needed to analyze the drama. In this paper the writer applies library research as the method of the study and applies psychological approach to analyze the main characters’ characteristics in order to find out the conflicts and then relate them to plots, hence the influence of the main characters’ conflicts toward the plots will be revealed.
1.4.1        Method of the Study
The library research was applied to support the analysis of the drama, collecting some data and information needed from the relevant books or other resources. Then reading and comprehending the data, making some notes until making conclusion. According to Atar Semi, library research is a method of doing a research in a working room or library, where the needed data and information about the subject matter are required through books or other audiovisual means. Library research is done to collect the data by finding some books related to the research as references (1993:8).
1.4.2        Method of Approach
Semiotic approach is employed in analyzing the drama. As Nurgiyantoro said that semiotic is a science or analysis method to examine signs. The signs could be a body language, mouth, eyes movement, color, and other things around our life (2000: 40). In this paper the writer utilizes psychological approach to analyze the main characters in the Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. It seems those approaches very close to analyze the aspects, especially the main character’s conflict and the plot, found in the main characters’ characteristic and the setting which influences the main characters. The analysis of the main characters is made by unfolding the character through actions and dialogue.
Literary works manifest social life and have a close relation with social community, as commonly literary works discuss the human life. Based on that statement the writer uses psychological approach to analyze the main characters. Psychological approach is an approach that is applied since literary works are frequently study events or phenomenon about human’s life (Atarsemi, 76:1993). Psychic conflicts are caused by psychological problems. It is natural, as humans’ character that desire something more and more which actually their ability and capability are limited. Therefore, humans’ life is just like a drama, which containing plots of life that may be due to humans’ characteristics and their interaction to surroundings in their social life or interaction to them selves, their mind or heart, in this case is internal conflicts. The psychological approach here includes the main characters’ characteristics and is used to analyze the main characters’ conflicts. The psychological approach is appropriate, because it can be used to explain the plot aspect and the characteristic of the main characters. 



2.1    Biography of Oscar Wilde
Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde was born in 1854. William Wilde, his father, was a doctor, specialist in disease of the eye and ear. Lady Jane Francesca Wilde, his mother, was a poet, journalist and well-known intellectuals in Dublin, Ireland. Although Wilde’s were not of the aristocracy, they were nonetheless prosperous and sent Oscar to the finest schools as he grew up. His mother was a best friend for him, as Oscar seems especially influenced by his mother, a brilliantly humorous storyteller, and he was frequently invited while still a child to participate in their intellectual circle of friends (Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 23, page 596).
In 1871, Oscar attended the Portora Royal School at Enniskillen, where Oscar excelled at studying the classics, obtaining top prize his last two years, and also earning a second prize in drawing. In 1871, Oscar was awarded by the Royal School Scholarship to attend Trinity College in Dublin. Again, he did particularly well in his classics courses, placing first in his examinations in 1872 and earning the highest honor the college could give on an undergraduate, a Foundation Scholarship. In 1874, Oscar reached his successes at Trinity with two final achievements. He won the college's Berkeley Gold Medal for Greek and was awarded a Demyship scholarship to Magdalen College in Oxford. (http://www.literature-web.net/wilde, accessed on April 19th 2005)
Oscar's father died on April 19, 1876, leaving the family financially strapped. Henry, William's eldest son, take over the wild’s role. He paid the finance on the family's house and supported them until his sudden death in 1877. Meanwhile, Oscar continued to do well at Oxford. He was awarded the Newdigate prize for his poem, Ravenna,and a First Class in both his "Mods" and "Greats" by his examiners. After graduation, Oscar moved to London to live with his friend Frank Miles, a popular high society portrait painter. In 1881, he published his first collection of poetry. Poems received mixed reviews by critics, but helped to move Oscar's writing career along, and was a well-known enough entity to be satirized by a Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera. He moved to the avant-garde neighborhood of Chelsea in London (Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 23, page 596).
In December 1881, Oscar sailed for New York to travel across the United States and carry a series of lectures on aesthetics. The 50-lecture tour was originally scheduled to last four months, but extended to nearly a year, with over 140 lectures given in 260 days. In between lectures he made time to meet with Henry Longfellow, Oliver Wendell Holmes and Walt Whitman. He also arranged for his play, Vera, and then was staged in New York the following year. When he returned from America, Oscar spent three months in Paris writing a blank-verse tragedy that had been commissioned by the actress Mary Anderson. When he sent it to her, however, she turned it down. He then started out on a lecture tour of Britain and Ireland (Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 23, page 596).
In 1884, Oscar married a shy and rich Irishwoman, Constance Lloyd. She was a skilled woman who could speak several European languages and had an outspoken, independent mind. After they had married, they moved in to a posh London house. Their marriage was awarded two children, Cyril in 1885 and Vyvyan in 1886. For supporting Oscar’s family, he briefly worked at The Woman's Worldmagazine from 1887-1889, and he wrote a collection of fairy tales and more essays championing the Aesthetic movement. In the 1890s, he published his two works of children’s stories, The happy Prince And Other Tales (1888) and The House of Pomegranates (1892). In 1890, he also published his first and only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, a Faustian tale about beauty and youth. In February 1892 he opened his first play, Lady Windermere's Fan. The other plays such as Salome (1892), A Woman of No Importance(1893), An Ideal Husband (1895), and The Importance of Being Earnest(1895) were his works which finally made him well-known as a playwright. His last play, The Importance of Being Earnest, is also considered his greatest and the modern shining example of the comedy of manners (http://www.cmgww.com/historic/wilde/, accessed on April 19th 2005).
However, by now Wilde was infatuated with the younger, beautiful poet Lord Alfred Douglas (known as "Bosie"), and he was not shy about flaunting their sexual relationship. Douglas's father, the Marquess of Queensbury, accused Wilde of sodomy. Wilde, never one to back down from a fight, charged Queensbury with slander. However, Queensbury had several of Wilde's letters to Bosie and other incriminating evidence as well. Alongside the provocative material in Wilde's work, the writer was found guilty of homosexuality in a second trial and sentenced to two years of hard labor (Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 23, page 596).
In 1897, while in prison, Wilde wrote De Profundis, an examination of his newfound spirituality. After his release, he moved to France under an assumed name. He wrote The Ballad of Reading Gaol in 1898 and published two letters on the poor conditions of prison; one of the letters helped reform a law to prevent children from imprisonment. His new life in France, however, was lonely, impoverished, and humiliating. Wilde died in 1900 at the age of 46 from Meningitis, in a Paris hotel room. Nevertheless, he retained his epigrammatic wit until his last breath; he is rumored to have said in the drab hotel room, "My wallpaper and I are fighting a duel to the death. One of us has to go." Critical and popular attention to Wilde has experienced a great resurgence; numerous films based on his plays and life have delighted audiences, while his writings remain a wellspring of witty and subtle thought on aestheticism, morality, and society (Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 23, page 596).

2.2    Synopsis of The Importance of Being Earnest
The drama tells about two men, Earnest Worthing (or Jack in the cast list and Jack in the body of the play) and Algernon Moncrieff (Algy). In 1895, in a stylish and artistic London flat, Algy is preparing for the arrival of his aunt, Lady Bracknell, and her daughter, Gwendolen. His butler, Lane, brings in Jack. Jack says that he just returned from the country. Of course Algy is curious by his coming to town. Jack tells that she has come to town to propose Gwendolen. Algy is surprised, as doubt Jack’s love to Gwendolen. He is doubtful to Jack’s love to Gwendolen, because the way Jack flirts with Gwendolen is completely disgraceful as bad as Gwendolen flirts with Jack. Algy says that before Jack proposes to Gwendolen he has to explain first a question of Cecily. Algy calls Lane to bring in the cigarette case. Jack says that Cecily is her aunt. But Algy does not believe him, as the inscription inside the cigarette case says:” From little Cecily, with her fondest love to her dear uncle Jack.” Moreover Algy knows his name is not Jack, but Ernest. Jack finally reveals that he has a name of Ernest when he is in town and a name of Jack in the country. Algy says that Jack has been undergoing a “Bunburying”, as Algy does. Algy has also invented an invalid brother named Bunbury.
Jack explains that Cecily is a granddaughter of Thomas Cardew, who lives in the country. Jack was adopted by Mr. Cardew and inquired to be a guardian to Cecily. Cecily now lives at Jack's place in the country under the guidance of her governess, Miss Prism. Since Jack must maintain a high level of morality to set an example, he needs an excuse to get into town. He has invented an idle younger brother named Ernest who lives in Albany. Algernon also confesses that he has created an invalid, Bunbury, in the country. He uses the Bunbury whenever he needs to get out of town. Jack says he is tired to be "Ernest," but Algernon maintains that he will need him more than ever if he marries.
Lady Bracknell and Gwendolen arrive. Algy tells Lady Bracknell that he will be unable to attend her dinner tonight, as Bunbury is ill. They go into the music room. While Jack gives ten minutes to confesses his feeling to Gwendolen in the living room. Then Jack begins, he says that he likes her, and Gwendolen admits that she likes him, too. Gwendolen discloses that she has always dreamed to love someone named Ernest. Jack asks if his name were not Ernest would she still love him, and she answered She would, she will remain love him. He proposes to her, and she accepts. Suddenly Lady Bracknell comes in, and Gwendolen informs her of their engagement. Lady Bracknell says that only she or her father can engage Gwendolen, and orders her to wait in the carriage.
After examining Jack, Lady Bracknell learns from Jack that he was an orphan, found in a handbag on a train. She is stunned and says she will not allow her daughter to marry him. She wants Jack to look for a parent of any sex immediately, but he refuses that.
Jack tells Algy what happened, and also says he will “kill” his brother Ernest later in the week. Algernon expresses interest in meeting Cecily, but Jack does not want this to happen, as she is young and pretty. Then unexpectedly, Gwendolen returns. She tells Algernon to turn his back, as she wants to speak personally with Jack. She asks Jack his address in the country. She promises to write him quite often when he returns there. Algernon slyly listens their conversation behind and writes down and checks a train timetable. As soon as Jack and Gwendolen leave, Algy orders Lane to prepare everything he needs, as he will be going Bunburying tomorrow.
In the garden at Jack's country house, Miss Prism and Cecily are discussing Jack's seriousness; Miss Prism believes it is due to his anxiety over his brother. Dr. Chasuble enters the garden and asks Miss Prism to leave for a walk together. Merriman, their butler, announces the arrival of Ernest Worthing. Algy enters and he introduces himself as Ernest. He and Cecily briefly discuss his "wicked" reputation, while he tries to flirt with Cecily. Algy soon learns from Cecily that Jack will be back Monday afternoon, Algernon says that he must leave Monday morning.
Miss Prism and Chasuble return. She advises him to get married to a mature lady. Then Jack comes to the garden in black dress. He says that he has returned earlier than expected, and informs that his black dress describe his sorry, as his brother Ernest has died in Paris last night. Jack asks Chasuble if he would christen him this afternoon. He agrees. When Cecily appears from the house, she tells that she is absolutely glad because of his brother coming. She says that she has met Ernest and now he is in the dining room. Jack surprised and says he doesn't have a brother anymore. She runs into the house and brings out Algy. Jack refuses to shake Algernon's hand, but Cecily says that "Ernest" has been telling him about his friend Bunbury, and that someone who takes care of an invalid must have some good in him. Everyone but Jack and Algy leaves. Jack orders Merriman to get the dogcart, as Ernest has been called back to town. Jack tells Algy he must leave, while Algernon conveys an interest in Cecily. Jack exits.
Cecily enters the garden. Merriman tells Algernon the dogcart is ready, but Cecily says it can wait. Algernon compliments Cecily to her great delight, then tells Merriman that the dogcart can come back next week. He asks Cecily to marry him, and she points out that they have been engaged for three months. She shows him the box of letters he wrote to her. But actually the letters was written by Cecily for herself. She also admits that she loves him because his name is Ernest. Algy asks her whether she would still love him if his name were Algernon. And she says might be doubtful to love Algernon. Algy says he needs to see Chasuble quickly about christening. He wants to be christened as Ernest.
Merriman announces that Gwendolen has insisted to see Mr. Worthing (Jack). Cecily informs him that he has gone off to see Chasuble some time ago, but invites her in. Gwendolen immediately takes to Cecily, but wishes Cecily were not so young and charming, as "Ernest," despite his moral nature, is still susceptible to temptation. Cecily tells her that she is not Ernest's ward, but his brother Jack's. She also says that she is going to marry Ernest. They compare diary entries. Gwendolen feels she has the prior claim, since Ernest asked to marry her yesterday. The girls argue and insult each other.
When Jack enters the garden, Gwendolen asks if he is engaged to Cecily; he laughs and denies it. Cecily says the man before them is  not Ernest at all, but he is her Uncle Jack. As Gwendolen goes into shock, Algernon enters, and Cecily calls him Ernest. She asks if he is married to Gwendolen; he denies it. Gwendolen says that his name is Algernon. Cecily is upset, and she and Gwendolen hold each other and make up. Jack at last confesses that he has no brother Ernest, or any brother at all. The women leave the house. Jack is angry with Algy for he has been a troublemaker with his Bunburying. Then both Algy and Jack arrange to meet Chasuble and ask him to christen them "Ernest" later that evening. Jack tells Algy to leave his house, but he refuses.
Jack and Algernon meet Gwendolen and Cecily inside the country house. The women tell the men their Christian names are still being a problem. The men reveal that they are to be re-christened this afternoon, and the couples hug.
Lady Bracknell arrives, and Gwendolen, once again, informs her of her engagement. Unluckily, Lady Bracknell also does not agree with their engagement. She asks Jack to not continue their relationship.
Jack introduces Cecily to Lady Bracknell, and Algy says that he is engaged to her. Lady Bracknell gives her consent for their marriage, because she discovers Cecily has a large personal fortune. Jack, however, does not give his consent, as Jack assumes it is too young for Cecily to marry in her 18. He would only give his consent if she has reached 35 years old. He also suspects Algy as an untruthful man, as he has impersonated to be Jack's brother. It seems Jack is prowling to get his chance to marry Gwendolen. Jack tells Lady Bracknell that he would give his consent to the marriage of Algy and Cecily if she also gives her consent to his marriage with Gwendolen. Arrogantly, Lady Bracknell refuses and tells Gwendolen to get ready for the train.
Chasuble enters and announces that the christenings are ready. Lady Bracknell refuses to allow Algernon to be baptized, and Jack tells Chasuble that the christenings will not be necessary any more. Chasuble says he will leave, and says that Miss Prism is waiting for him. Learning Miss Prism presents, Lady Bracknell surprised and, at once, accuses her of kidnapping a baby boy from her house 28 years ago. Miss Prism’s face goes pale; he replies that he admits that. Under Jack's questioning, Miss Prism reveals she accidentally left the baby in a handbag on the Brighton railway line. Jack leaves excitedly.
Jack leaves for a moment and returns with a handbag. Miss Prism confesses that it is the same handbag. Jack tells her he was the baby. Lady Bracknell informs Jack that he is the son of her sister. Jack soon realizes that Algy is his brother. Jack asks Lady Bracknell what his original name was. She says he was named after his father. After looking up his name under the Army Lists, they learn his full name was Ernest John Moncrieff. All people in the room are cheerful and embrace each other. Jack tells Lady Bracknell that this the first time in his live he has just realized the vital importance of being Ernest.


The understanding of literary elements can be very helpful in analyzing literary work, for example, novel, drama and poetry. Literary elements can be classified into two categories. They are intrinsic and extrinsic elements. The intrinsic element of a literary work includes elements which establish a literary work inside. The elements are theme, plot, setting, character and characterization, and figure of speech. (Semi, 1998:31). For that reason the analysis of any kind of literary work needs a good knowledge about literary elements. Intrinsic element refers to setting, plot, theme, character, and point of view. Extrinsic element refers to social condition in a society and psychological condition. In this thesis the writer employs one of literary works especially drama to be analyzed. And he will employ several intrinsic elements to analyze the drama, namely character, plot and conflict, and one extrinsic element that is psychological condition.

3.1    Definition of Character and Characterization
Character is one of literary elements that is very vital to understand the entire story of a literary work. Characters are the humans, animals, or fantasized beings that are created by the author to act within a story for the author's purposes. In some instances, such as in historical fiction, there may be real human beings who lived during the time period of the story. A character may be described by the author through dialogues, actions, descriptions, and expositions of a narrator. As Roberts stated that in literature, a character is a verbal representation of a human being as presented to us by authors through the depiction of actions, conversations, descriptions, reactions, inner thoughts and reflections, and also through the author’s own interpretive commentary (Roberts, 2003:66).
Character is important in fictional work because a character helps to develop the plot. Character is influenced by events just as events are shaped the plot by characters (Meyer, 1990:61). Characters can be classified by the amount of influence they have over the plot. If a character has a large influence on the plot, that is, if the character's actions have a significant effect on the ending of the story, then that character is considered a major (or main) character. On the other hand, if a character has a small influence on the plot, that is, if the character's actions have little effect on the ending of the story, then that character is considered a minor character.
Furthermore according to Roberts and Jacobs, flat characters are essentially undistinguishable from their group or class. Therefore they are not individual, but representative. Usually they stay the same; they are static, and not dynamic like round character. They are not developed, and because they are not central to the plot they do not change or grow (Roberts and Jacobs, 1989:23). Based on the statement, characters can also be classified by the amount of change they exhibit in their personalities. If a character undergoes a significant change in personality, then that character is considered a dynamic character. If a character shows little or no change in personality, then that character is considered a static character.
Meanwhile, in order to analyze a character's personality or motivations, the reader must search for a pattern in the character's behavior, or this way is called characterization. According to William Harmon characterization is the presentation of the character in action, with little or no explicit comment by the author, from the action (2003: 88). And in order to discover this pattern, the  reader needs to  understand  the  techniques  of characterization,  which is  the   process   by  which  an author creates              a character. Robert  Di Yanni, in   his   book of  Literature: Reading  Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and the Essay, formulates   four techniques of characterization. They are exposition, dialogue, action and description (http://www.utm.edu/research/iep/l/literary.htm, accessed on February 21st 2005). 
First, through the exposition of the narrator, the narrator of a story or play may comment on how he/she feels, on what he/she thinks, on what he/she intends to do. This narrator may also voice an opinion about other characters, an opinion that helps the reader to understand those characters but also understand the narrator as well.
Second, through dialogue or what a character says. As with people in real life, what characters say and how they say it, reveals much about their personalities. A character's choice of words can reveal his/her feelings and intentions as well as provide insights into social status, education level, and area of residence.
Third, through action (what a character does). Again, as with people in real life, what characters do, and how they do it, reveals much about their personalities. A character who simply tense up his fist upon hearing that his father has died is likely to be a different sort of person than one who shouts, screams, and weeps upon hearing the same news. Also, a reader should make a special note of how closely a character's actions and dialogue agree.
Fourth, through description (how a character looks/what belongings a character owns). We often gain our first impression of a person by noting what clothes he or she is wearing, what car he or she is driving, etc.
Staying aware of these methods will help the reader determine if a character is major or minor, dynamic or static, round or flat. The reader should also use these methods to determine the reasons behind his/her attitudes towards the characters.
Meanwhile the extrinsic aspect that will be discussed is psychology. Analyzing character may include psychological aspect. According to Dennis Coon psychology is not only the science that learns the mind, but also the behavior. Additionally, Dennis Coon explains psychology is the scientific study of the behavior of organism; its goal is to describe, understand, predict and control behavior (1983: 12). It can be said, in recent time, that psychology may be described most as a science which learn both human and animal behavior.
Psychology has given much influence on literature and literary criticism. The relationship between literature and psychology commonly derives from psychology dimension in literary works and the application of psychology theory in interpreting literary text. Literary work inherently implies elements of psychology that establish the whole content of literary work. A viewpoint of psychological consideration can also be used in the process of literary text interpretation theory and concept of psychology, which is used to comprehend the literary text, will be meaningful to transform the text into meaning. Thereby, literature and psychology are inseparable psychology explain underlying reasons for character’s behavior or elaborates the relationship between conflict and psychological condition of characters and evaluates their behavior and motive in doing something.
The application of psychology in literature is to analyze the behavior of characters, both protagonist and antagonist. This is one of the goals of psychology in literature. By using this science, we can find out the personality, motivation, goals or even the life of each character in a story.

3.2    Definition of Conflict
The intrinsic elements which can attract the readers’ interest to continue the reading of literary works, especially drama, are the reflection of conflict.
As human beings we are created as a social creature, which means we alive our life, hand in hand with others. We have many hopes and wishes to be fulfilled in our life. However, life is that simple because our needs could not always be satisfied. There are many obstacles, internal and environmental, which interfere our live to get our goals.
Robert E. Silverman in his book of Psychology divided conflicts into four types, namely:
a.       Approach-approach Conflict
The individual is drawn to two equality pleasurable goals and in choosing, one must eliminate the other.
b.      Approach-Avoidance Conflict
One goal has both positive and negative qualities that alternately or simultaneously attract and repel the individual.
c.       Double Approach-Avoidance Conflict
The individual is caught between two goals, both of which have positive and negative qualities.
d.      Avoidance-avoidance Conflict
The individual is pressured to choose between two goals. Instead of making a choice between these alternatives, some individuals will respond by escaping the entire situation.
Conflict can be a centre of a story. Conflicts, which become the basis of plot, are the conflict of the protagonist. This situation and condition arouse some events on the story and make the story alive. Generally, the central of theme of a story is a conflict and how to solve or to end the conflicts.
Conflict is the element of the story which shows the concerns of the central characters. There are some universal conflicts which are often identified by the terms: character vs. character, character vs. self, character vs.  society, character vs. nature. (http://www.mc3.edu/aa/lal/workshops/LiteraryDefinitions.html,  accessed on April 27th 2005).
According to Holman in his book A Handbook of Literature, conflict is a struggle which grows out of the interplay of the two opposing forces in plot. The character, usually the protagonist, may be involved in conflict of four different kinds, namely a struggle against the forces of nature, a struggle against another person, usually the protagonist, a struggle against society as a force, and a struggle for mastery by two elements within the person.
While according to Nurgiyantoro conflict can be divided into two categories: internal and external. Internal conflict is a conflict that exists inside a character’s mind. In other word, conflict is a fight against himself. Meanwhile, external conflict is defined as a conflict that exists between character in the story and something beyond his power (1995:124).
Conflict is also one of the causes in a story that makes it become more fascinating. A story without conflict will be monotonous. Therefore, conflict is an important part of a story.

3.3    Definition of Plot
The most important intrinsic element that will be very useful in comprehending the whole story is plot. When the reader can understand the plot of a story in drama, it means that he knows the entire story of it in detail. According to Aminuddin, the definition of plot in the literary works commonly is a series of story which is formed by some stages of event until they produce a story that is presented by the actor or actress (2002: 83).
Plot may be discussed in terms of exposition, complication, climax, revelation, and denouement. Loban, as cited by Aminuddin, describes the stages of plot as wave. The wave beginning from (1) exposition, (2) complication or beginning intrigues that grows to become conflicts, (3) climax, (4) revelation or clarification of problems, and (5) denouement or joyful ending, which is differentiated from catastrophe, that is a sad ending; and solution, that is an opened ending because only the readers will end the story through their imagination (2002: 84-85)


4.1    The Main Characters in Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest
As the writer explained in the previous chapter that character is the central part of a story, because it determines whether the story will be interesting or not.  A good story is able to make the reader influenced all at once, through his/her imagination, even it can influence the reader’s psychology. The Importance of Being Earnest may be one of the stories that can make the writer interested in and makes him try to analyze it through the main characters that are Jack Cardew and Algernon.
4.1.1        John Worthing (Jack Cardew)
Jack is a man of twenty-nine years old. He lives at Manor House in the country, and sometimes in the town. He desires to come to town just looking for pleasure, as Algy said. However, his main aim coming to town just to meet Gwendolen as he wants to express his love to her. Therefore, he has two different names. He uses the name of Ernest in the town and Jack in the country. He likes to introduce himself as Ernest to everyone especially to a girl he loves.
Jack. I am in love with Gwendolen. I have come up to town expressly to propose to her.
Algernon. I thought you had come up for pleasure?... I call that business. (Wilde, 1959: 5)
Jack is an orphan. He tells everything truly about himself to Lady Backnell, because Lady Bracknell asks him. He explains that He does not know his personal history, when Lady Bracknell asks him about his parents. He is confused how to explain to her. Then, he frankly speaks that he lost both his parents. Astoundingly, Lady Bracknell is shocked to hear what Jack says. Losing one parent, Lady Backnell said, is a misfortune, but losing both parents is a careless. (Wilde, 1959: 20)
Then, Jack tries to explain that he has been taking care by Mr. Thomas Cardew since he was a child. He said that Mr. Thomas Cardew found him in a handbag in Victoria Station. Mr. Thomas Cardew gave Jack the name of Worthing because he turns out to have a first-class ticket for Worthing in his pocket at that time.
Jack. I am afraid I really don’t know. The fact is, Lady Bracknell, I said I had lost my parents. It would be nearer the truth to say that my parents seem to have lost me... I don’t actually know who I am by birth. I was... well, I was found.
Jack. The late Mr. Thomas Cardew, an old gentleman of a very charitable and kindly disposition, found me, and gave me the name of Worthing, because he happened to have a first-class ticket for Worthing in his pocket at the time. Worthing is a place in Sussex. It is a seaside resort. (Wilde, 1959: 20)

Jack is a perfect flatterer. He tries to attract Gwendolen and express his love. In a different room at Algernon’s place, he has a good chance to express his love.

Jack. [Nervously.] Miss Fairfax, ever since I met you I have admired you more than any girl... I have ever met since... I met you. (Wilde, 1959: 15)

Jack. My own one, I have never loved any one in the world but you. (Wilde, 1959: 17)

Gladly Gwendolen replies Jack’s love. She says that she loves him too. She said that his name of Ernest makes her desire to love Jack. According to her, the name is very inspired as it is able to produce a vibration like music.
As Jack has two different names, he, occasionally, lies by introducing himself as Ernest. He says to Algernon Jack is a liar. He always introduces himself as Ernest. He says to Algernon that his name is Jack in the country and Ernest in town. Even, Cecily, his niece, believes him that he has a brother named Ernest in town.
Jack. Well, my name is Ernest in town and Jack in the country, and the cigarette case was given to me in the country. (Wilde, 1959: 8)

Jack confesses to Gwendolen that he likes her, and she admits that she likes him too, especially since she has always wanted to love someone named Ernest. Jack asks if she would still love him if his name were not Ernest, for instance Jack. She said she would not. She said that the name Ernest is suitable with him. He proposes to her, and she accepts.
However, eventually Gwendolen knows that Jack has been lying to her. And Jack cannot deny it, because he also does not know his real name since he knows that he was a baby found in a hand-bag by Mr. Thomas Cardew in a cloakroom at Victoria station.
Jack. [Very seriously.] Yes, Lady Bracknell. I was in a hand-bag - a somewhat large, black leather… (Wilde, 1959: 20)

Jack. In the cloak-room at Victoria Station. It was given to him in mistake for his own. (Wilde, 1959: 20)

He seems to try hard all this time to know his real parents. Finally, Miss Prism is the key of his problem. Because of her, he knows that actually Algernon is his elder brother through Lady Bracknell’s explanation.  Then, he immediately seeks out through the military periodicals of the time, and reveals that his father’s name was Ernest. He learns that his name Ernest John Moncrief as first sons is always named of the father. Delightfully, Jack tells Lady Bracknell that he has realized, for the first time in his life, "the vital Importance of Being Earnest."
Jack. The Army Lists of the last forty years are here. These delightful records should have been my constant study. [Rushes to bookcase and tears the books out.] M. Generals... Mallam, Maxbohm, Magley, what ghastly names they have - Markby, Migsby, Mobbs, Moncrieff! Lieutenant 1840, Captain, Lieutenant-Colonel, Colonel, General 1869, Christian names, Ernest John. [Puts book very quietly down and speaks quite calmly.] I always told you, Gwendolen, my name was Ernest, didn’t I? Well, it is Ernest after all. I mean it naturally is Ernest. (Wilde, 1959: 73)

Because Jack has many sides in his personality, he can be categorized as a round character.

4.1.2        Algernon Moncrieff (Algy)
Algernon is bachelor with high fortune and a superior class. He lives in a flat in a prominent part of London. He is Lady Bracknell’s nephew, and Jack is his closest friend in town. He is not a great in playing piano, but he can play it with wonderful expression.
Algernon. I’m sorry for that, for your sake. I don’t play accurately - any one can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life. (Wilde, 1959: 1)

Algernon is a great pretender. He creates someone else as Jack does. He makes an invalid friend named Bunbury. He uses the name as a reason to avoid Lady Bracknell’s dinner invitation. He said that Bunbury gets sick, so he has to visit him. And he also takes advantage of the name Bunbury in order he can set off into country as often as he likes.
Algernon       I have invented an invaluable permanent invalid called Bunbury, in order that I may be able to go down into the country whenever I choose… (Wilde, 1959: 10)

Algernon. It is a great bore, and, I need hardly say, a terrible disappointment to me, but the fact is I have just had a telegram to say that my poor friend Bunbury is very ill again. [Exchanges glances with Jack.] They seem to think I should be with him. (Wilde, 1959: 13)

He is not a serious person to the problem he faces. For example, when Jack finds that Algernon is bunburying in his house, Manor House, using the name of Ernest, though he has told to everyone in Manor House that he his brother, Ernest, was die in Paris suffered from chili. Innocently Algernon can make the situation become cheerful such someone who lost his brother and suddenly found his brother.
He is a romantic man. As Ernest, he really does, especially in front of Cecily.
Cecily. You dear romantic boy. (kisses her, she puts her fingers through his hair)… (Wilde, 1959: 44)

He is a smart person. He is able to make Jack confess that he has been “bunburying” all the time, and he successes to get Cecily’s love through many struggles and obstacles. He pretends as Ernest at Manor House in order Cecily will impress him and accepts his love. However, once Cecily uncovers his undercover, and it causes a big anger of her. Then Algernon tries to clear up the problem by explaining that he did everything for her and would sacrifice anything for her. It seems a satisfied explanation and acceptable towards Cecily.
Algernon. Well, I simply wanted to be engaged to Cecily. I adore her. (Wilde, 1959: 55)

Algernon can be categorized as round character, as he has two different names with different character. Besides, he also acts as Ernest to get Cecily’s love, and finally Cecily makes him to be Algernon again. Therefore, Algernon has no choice, and cannot deny it.

4.2    The Conflicts of the Main Characters
Conflicts may be considered as an element that can make a story more attractive to be read. Conflicts in a story or literary work could happen to main character/protagonist toward antagonist. Conflicts may be divided into two, namely internal conflict and external conflict.
4.2.1        The Internal Conflict
The internal conflict happens to Jack when Jack is curious about his real name. He tries to find it in Army List of the last forty years. And finally he finds his real name, that is Ernest.
Jack   …The Army Lists of the last 40 years are here.These delightful records should have been my constant study.M.Generals…Mallam,Maxbohm, Magley, what ghastly names they have – Markby, Magsby, Mobbs, Moncrieff! Lieutenant 1840, Captain, Lieutenant – Colonel, Colonel, General 1869, Christian names, Ernest John. I always told you, Gwendolen, my name was Ernest, didn’t I? Well, it is Ernest after all. I mean it naturally is Ernest. (Wilde, 1959: 73)

Jack conflicts with himself as well when he insists Gwendolen to marry him because he is afraid if Gwendolen knew his name was not Ernest she would love him any more. His worry shows his internal conflict that may be one day his ambiguous personality will be revealed. 
Jack. Well, really, Gwendolen, I must say that I think there are lots of other much nicer names. I think Jack, for instance, a charming name.
Gwendolen. Jack?... No, there is very little music in the name Jack, if any at all, indeed. It does not thrill. It produces absolutely no vibrations... I have known several Jacks, and they all, without exception, were more than usually plain. Besides, Jack is a notorious domesticity for John! And I pity any woman who is married to a man called John. She would probably never be allowed to know the entrancing pleasure of a single moment’s solitude. The only really safe name is Ernest
Jack. Gwendolen, I must get christened at once - I mean we must get married at once. There is no time to be lost. (Wilde, 1959: 16)

Jack’s confession that he has no brother shows that he getting afraid if keep lying Gwendolen will not love him any more. But, however, his confession still makes Gwendolen angry with him.
Jack. [Slowly and hesitatingly.] Gwendolen - Cecily - it is very painful for me to be forced to speak the truth. It is the first time in my life that I have ever been reduced to such a painful position, and I am really quite inexperienced in doing anything of the kind. However, I will tell you quite frankly that I have no brother Ernest. I have no brother at all. I never had a brother in my life, and I certainly have not the smallest intention of ever having one in the future. (Wilde, 1959: 54)

Gwendolen. I am afraid it is quite clear, Cecily, that neither of us is engaged to be married to any one. (Wilde, 1959: 56)

While internal conflict which is experienced by Algernon begins when he knows for the first time about “Ernest” from Cecily, namely he is surprised when he knows that he has been engaging with Cecily for three months. (Wilde, 1959: 46)
He is also surprised when he knows that “Ernest” has ever written some letters to Cecily.
Cecily. Yes, you’ve wonderfully good taste, Ernest. It’s the excuse I’ve always given for your leading such a bad life. And this is the box in which I keep all your dear letters. [Kneels at table, opens box, and produces letters tied up with blue ribbon.]
Algernon. My letters! But, my own sweet Cecily, I have never written you any letters. (Wilde, 1959: 44)
Those Cecily’s confessions make Algernon very glad to be Ernest, as unexpectedly “Ernest” is very close to Cecily and he is everything for Cecily. It is a very fortune for him. He, at last, really falls in love with Cecily.
Algernon is getting worried because Cecily likes the name of Ernest. Cecily says she would not love him if his name were not Ernest.
Algernon. But, my dear child, do you mean to say you could not love me if I had some other name? (Wilde, 1959: 45)

Cecily. But I don’t like the name of Algernon.
Algernon. Well, my own dear, sweet, loving little darling, I really can’t see why you should object to the name of Algernon. It is not at all a bad name. In fact, it is rather an aristocratic name. Half of the chaps who get into the Bankruptcy Court are called Algernon. But seriously, Cecily... [Moving to her]... if my name was Algy, couldn’t you love me?
Cecily. [Rising.] I might respect you, Ernest, I might admire your character, but I fear that I should not be able to give you my undivided attention. (Wilde, 1959: 45)

Algernon has to confess, at last, that his friend Bunbury has died because he only wants to be an “Algernon” who loves Cecily, and may be according to him the Bunbury will bother his love to Cecily someday.
4.2.2        The External Conflict
The external conflicts experienced by Jack and Algernon occur in many occasions and with others character.
Jack conflicts with Algernon when he wants to propose Gwendolen, but Algernon do not give his consent to him because he suspects that Jack has another girl named Cecily.
Algernon.      it isn’t. It is a great truth. It accounts for the extraordinary number of bachelors that one sees all over the place. In the second place, I don’t give my consent. (Wilde, 1959: 6)

Algernon.      My dear fellow, Gwendolen is my first cousin. And before I allow you to marry her, you will have to clear up the whole question of Cecily. (Wilde, 1959: 6)

The conflict continues when Lady Bracknell knows that her daughter, Gwendolen, has just been engaged by Jack.
Lady Bracknell. Pardon me, you are not engaged to any one. When you do become engaged to some one, I, or your father, should his health permit him, will inform you of the fact. … (Wilde, 1959: 17)

Jack has to face Lady Bracknell’s questions first before he engages Gwendolen. After several questions from Lady Bracknell are answered by Jack, he still does not get Lady Bracknell’s consent to marry Gwendolen. Lady Bracknell is very astonished when she knows that Jack is an Orphan and has an unclear origin.
Lady Bracknell. Me, sir! What has it to do with me? You can hardly imagine that I and Lord Bracknell would dream of allowing our only daughter - a girl brought up with the utmost care - to marry into a cloak-room, and form an alliance with a parcel? Good morning, Mr. Worthing! (Wilde, 1959: 21)

Jack is very angry when he reveals that Algernon is at the Manor House. Jack knows what Algernon’s aim to meet Cecily, that is why he wants Algernon to leave the Manor House. He does not want Algernon to bunbury in Manor House by using the name of Ernest to flirt Cecily, because Cecily is too young for Algernon.
Algernon.      I would rather like to see Cecily.
Jack.  I will take very good care you never do. She is excessively pretty, and she is only just eighteen. (Wilde, 1959: 24)

Jack.  you young scoundrel, Algy, you must get out of this place as soon as possible. I don’t allow any Bunburying here. (Wilde, 1959: 39)

When Cecily reveals that Jack does not have any brother and is surprised that her “Ernest” is actually Algernon, she immediately goes mad. And it happens to Gwendolen as well, she finally reveals that Jack has been lying to her. She is disappointed as soon as she knows that her “Ernest” is Jack.
Jack. [Slowly and hesitatingly.] Gwendolen - Cecily - it is very painful for me to be forced to speak the truth. It is the first time in my life that I have ever been reduced to such a painful position, and I am really quite inexperienced in doing anything of the kind. However, I will tell you quite frankly that I have no brother Ernest. I have no brother at all. I never had a brother in my life, and I certainly have not the smallest intention of ever having one in the future. (Wilde, 1959: 54)

Gwendolen. I am afraid it is quite clear, Cecily, that neither of us is engaged to be married to any one. (Wilde, 1959: 54)

Jack blames Algernon because his secret of being Ernest is finally revealed. According to him it due to his “bunburying” at Manor House. Therefore, as Cecily’s guardian he does not agree if Algernon engages Cecily, because it is very impolite.
Jack. This ghastly state of things is what you call Bunburying, I suppose? (Wilde, 1959: 54)

Jack. As for your conduct towards Miss Cardew, I must say that your taking in a sweet, simple, innocent girl like that is quite inexcusable. To say nothing of the fact that she is my ward. (Wilde, 1959: 55)

Algernon reciprocates Jack by saying the same thing that he will not let Jack marries with Gwendolen, as she is his cousin.
Algernon. I don’t think there is much likelihood, Jack, of you and Miss Fairfax being united. (Wilde, 1959: 55)

Algernon. I can see no possible defence at all for your deceiving a brilliant, clever, thoroughly experienced young lady like Miss Fairfax. To say nothing of the fact that she is my cousin. (Wilde, 1959: 55)

Again, Jack resists Algernon’s will to marry Cecily, although Lady Bracknell gives her consent to both Algernon and Cecily. Finally he gives and offering to Lady Bracknell that he would give his consent to Algernon to marry Cecily if only she gives her consent to him to marry Cecily.
Lady Bracknell. You are perfectly right in making some slight alteration. Indeed, no woman should ever be quite accurate about her age. It looks so calculating... [In a meditative manner.] Eighteen, but admitting to twenty at evening parties. Well, it will not be very long before you are of age and free from the restraints of tutelage. So I don’t think your guardian’s consent is, after all, a matter of any importance. (Wilde, 1959: 66)

Jack. But my dear Lady Bracknell, the matter is entirely in your own hands. The moment you consent to my marriage with Gwendolen, I will most gladly allow your nephew to form an alliance with my ward. (Wilde, 1959: 67)

A conflict between Jack and Miss Prism also takes place when Jack insists Miss Prism to say the truth, who his parents is. After showing a handbag, Miss Prism admits that it is hers, where she put the baby and left it in the cloakroom of Victoria Station. He thinks that Miss Prism is his mother, but actually she does not, because she has never married yet before, even at her age now. He finally reveals his parents through the explanation of Lady Bracknell.
Jack. Miss Prism, this is a matter of no small importance to me. I insist on knowing where you deposited the hand-bag that contained that infant. (Wilde, 1959: 69)

Miss Prism. [Calmly.] It seems to be mine. Yes, here is the injury it received through the upsetting of a Gower Street omnibus in younger and happier days. Here is the stain on the lining caused by the explosion of a temperance beverage, an incident that occurred at Leamington. And here, on the lock, are my initials. I had forgotten that in an extravagant mood I had had them placed there. The bag is undoubtedly mine. I am delighted to have it so unexpectedly restored to me. It has been a great inconvenience being without it all these years. (Wilde, 1959: 70)

Jack. [In a pathetic voice.] Miss Prism, more is restored to you than this hand-bag. I was the baby you placed in it. (Wilde, 1959: 71)

Miss Prism. [Recoiling in indignant astonishment.] Mr. Worthing! I am unmarried (Wilde, 1959: 71)

The writer concludes that both internal and external conflicts of the main characters may be included as approach-approach conflict. Algernon and Jack have “doubled” their selves by using different name in different place. Firstly, they are comfortable with the situation the do. However, eventually, their duality causes them to choose one of two different names. In the end, Algernon has “to kill” and chooses to become himself, Algernon, because he has no choice since Cecily knows that he was not Ernest. And Jack chooses to become Ernest, although he has intended to disappear Ernest, but he finally finds that he is the real Ernest.

4.3    The Plot of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest
4.3.1        Exposition
The exposition of the play is some obstacles faced by Jack and Algernon. Jack faces many obstacles to his romantic union with Gwendolen. One obstacle is presented by Lady Bracknell, who objects to what she refers to as Jack’s “origins” (i.e. his inability to define his family background).
Lady Bracknell. To lose one parent, Mr. Worthing, may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose both looks like carelessness. Who was your father? He was evidently a man of some wealth. Was he born in what the Radical papers call the purple of commerce, or did he rise from the ranks of the aristocracy? (Wilde, 1959: 20)

Another obstacle is Gwendolen’s obsession with the name “Ernest,” since she does not know Jack’s real name. Jack afraid Gwendolen will not love him again if his name is not Ernest.
Jack. But you don’t really mean to say that you couldn’t love me if my name wasn’t Ernest?
Gwendolen. But your name is Ernest.
Jack. Yes, I know it is. But supposing it was something else? Do you mean to say you couldn’t love me then? (Wilde, 1959: 15)

Although Jack does not care either his name Ernest or not, but Gwendolen loves very much the name of Ernest as the name is suitable for Jack and, according to her, it can create “a vibration” like music.
Gwendolen. It suits you perfectly. It is a divine name. It has a music of its own. It produces vibrations.
Gwendolen. Jack?... No, there is very little music in the name Jack, if any at all, indeed. It does not thrill. It produces absolutely no vibrations... I have known several Jacks, and they all, without exception, were more than usually plain. Besides, Jack is a notorious domesticity for John! And I pity any woman who is married to a man called John. She would probably never be allowed to know the entrancing pleasure of a single moment’s solitude. The only really safe name is Ernest. (Wilde, 1959: 16)

Other obstacle faced by Algernon also comes from Jack. When Algernon wants Jack to explain clearly about a name of Cecily. Algrenon will not allow Jack to marry Gwendolen before he explains about the matter.
Algernon. My dear fellow, Gwendolen is my first cousin. And before I allow you to marry her, you will have to clear up the whole question of Cecily. [Rings bell.]
Jack. Cecily! What on earth do you mean? What do you mean, Algy, by Cecily! I don’t know any one of the name of Cecily. (Wilde, 1959: 6)

Meanwhile, the obstacle faced by Algernon is Jack does not allow him to know his address in the country. Because Jack suspects him Algernon will meet her, and may be will fall in love with her.
Algernon. Where is that place in the country, by the way?
Jack. That is nothing to you, dear boy. You are not going to be invited... I may tell you candidly that the place is not in Shrospshire. (Wilde, 1959: 9)

4.3.2        Rising Action
Algernon discovers that Jack is leading a double life and that he has a pretty young ward named Cecily.

Jack. My dear fellow, there is nothing improbable about my explanation at all. In fact it’s perfectly ordinary. Old Mr. Thomas Cardew, who adopted me when I was a little boy, made me in his will guardian to his grand-daughter, Miss Cecily Cardew. Cecily, who addresses me as her uncle from motives of respect that you could not possibly appreciate, lives at my place in the country under the charge of her admirable governess, Miss Prism. (Wilde, 1959: 9)

The revelation of Jack’s origins causes Lady Bracknell to forbid his union with Gwendolen. Lady Bracknell doesn’t want her daughter, Gwendolen, marries a man who has undefined life background.
Lady Bracknell. Me, sir! What has it to do with me? You can hardly imagine that I and Lord Bracknell would dream of allowing our only daughter - a girl brought up with the utmost care - to marry into a cloak-room, and form an alliance with a parcel? Good morning, Mr. Worthing! (Wilde, 1959: 21)

Algernon finally knows Jack’s address in the country. He carefully snoops and listens when Jack is speaking to Gwendolen. He writes Jack’s address in the country and immediately plans to go to the country for “bunburying”. 
Gwendolen. The story of your romantic origin, as related to me by mamma, with unpleasing comments, has naturally stirred the deeper fibres of my nature. Your Christian name has an irresistible fascination. The simplicity of your character makes you exquisitely incomprehensible to me. Your town address at the Albany I have. What is your address in the country?
Jack. The Manor House, Woolton, Hertfordshire.
[Algernon, who has been carefully listening, smiles to himself, and writes the address on his shirt-cuff. Then picks up the Railway Guide.] (Wilde, 1959: 25)

Identifying himself as “Ernest,” Algernon visits Jack’s house in the country and falls in love with Cecily.
Algernon. To-morrow, Lane, I’m going Bunburying.
Algernon. I shall probably not be back till Monday. You can put up my dressclothes, my smoking jacket, and all the Bunbury suits . . . (Wilde, 1959: 26)

4.3.3        Climax
The play reaches its climax when Algernon comes to Jack’s house (Manor House) to meet Cecily. He confesses to Cecily as Ernest, Jack’s brother. Then problems come as soon as Gwendolen arrives at the Manor House. Both Cecily and Gwendolen argue each other that they are Ernest’s fiancée.
Gwendolen. I felt there was some slight error, Miss Cardew. The gentleman who is now embracing you is my cousin, Mr. Algernon Moncrieff. (Wilde, 1959: 53)

Cecily. [Breaking away from Algernon.] Algernon Moncrieff! Oh! [The two girls move towards each other and put their arms round each other’s waists protection.] (Wilde, 1959: 53)

Finally, Gwendolen and Cecily discover that both Jack and Algernon have been lying to them and that neither is really named “Ernest.”

Jack. [Standing rather proudly.] I could deny it if I liked. I could deny anything if I liked. But my name certainly is John. It has been John for years. (Wilde, 1959: 53)

4.3.4        Falling Action
An incidentally meeting between Lady Bracknell with Miss Prism to ask the existence of  male baby, which she took care of twenty-eight years ago, makes Miss Prism tell the whole true story of Jack’s origin.
Lady Bracknell. [In a severe, judicial voice.] Prism! [Miss Prism bows her head in shame.] Come here, Prism! [Miss Prismapproaches in a humble manner.] Prism! Where is that baby?... (Wilde, 1959: 69)

Finally Jack Confess to Gwendolen and Cecily that he doesn’t have any brother named Ernest. He makes reason of being Ernest in town is in order to be easy to meet Gwendelon as often as he wants. And Algernon’s reason being Ernest is that he just wants to meet Cecily.
Then Miss Prism tries to explain what actually had happened twenty-eight years ago, she said that the baby in a handbag had been converted with novels of her work.
Miss Prism. Lady Bracknell, I admit with shame that I do not know. I only wish I did. The plain facts of the case are these. On the morning of the day you mention, a day that is for ever branded on my memory, I prepared as usual to take the baby out in its perambulator. I had also with me a somewhat old, but capacious hand-bag in which I had intended to place the manuscript of a work of fiction that I had written during my few unoccupied hours. In a moment of mental abstraction, for which I never can forgive myself, I deposited the manuscript in the basinette, and placed the baby in the hand-bag. (Wilde, 1959: 69)

Miss Prism is revealed as the governess who mistakenly abandoned Jack as a baby and Jack is discovered to be Algernon’s elder brother.
     After learning Jack and Algernon reason, Cecily and Gwendolen, at last, forgive them. This resolution is ended with a happy ending, which is Jack at last reveals his real parents through the explanation of Miss Prism. She says that she put the baby in a handbag, and involuntary she leaves the handbag in Victoria Station, The Brighton Line, London. The handbag is as a proof of Jack’s origin, who in fact Jack’s parents are also Algernon’s parents. Thus, there are brother.
Jack. Algy’s elder brother! Then I have a brother after all. I knew I had a brother! I always said I had a brother! Cecily, - how could you have ever doubted that I had a brother? [Seizes hold of Algernon.] Dr. Chasuble, my unfortunate brother. Miss Prism, my unfortunate brother. Gwendolen, my unfortunate brother. Algy, you young scoundrel, you will have to treat me with more respect in the future. You have never behaved to me like a brother in all your life. (Wilde, 1959: 71)

4.3.5        Resolution (Denouement)
Jack’s original name is still curious for him. He asks Lady Bracknell what was his original name. Lady Bracknell said that a son used to be named after his father. He tries to look it up under army lists, and it is said that his full name is Ernest John Moncrieff.
Jack. The Army Lists of the last forty years are here. These delightful records should have been my constant study. [Rushes to bookcase and tears the books out.] M. Generals... Mallam, Maxbohm, Magley, what ghastly names they have - Markby, Migsby, Mobbs, Moncrieff! Lieutenant 1840, Captain, Lieutenant-Colonel, Colonel, General 1869, Christian names, Ernest John. [Puts book very quietly down and speaks quite calmly.] I always told you, Gwendolen, my name was Ernest, didn’t I? Well, it is Ernest after all. I mean it naturally is Ernest. (Wilde, 1959: 73)

 The very important thing is that Jack finally know his real name is Ernest. Therefore, he feels no meaningless during the time telling to every one that his name is Ernest and having a little brother.

4.4    The Influence of The Main Characters’ Conflicts Toward Plot In Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest
A detail discussion is needed for a complete analysis of those two variables of the main characters’ conflicts and the plots. Therefore, in this thesis the writer tries to find out the influence of those variables.
After analyzing the characters, the main characters conflicts and the plots, the writer found that they supported each other. Based on the title of this thesis, there are influences of the main characters toward plot. Sequences of the plot prove that the conflicts mainly derive from the main characters.
Jack’s internal conflicts such as, his ambiguity of being Ernest in town and Jack in the country, more or less as the cause of many events. For example, he begins to worry if someday Gwendolen does not love him again because his name is not Ernest. He, afterward, makes a plan “to kill” or disappear his created brother. As soon as he arrives from town, he makes an untruthful news to Cecily that his brother, Ernest, was die in Paris suffered from cold. He also asks Dr. Chasuble to christen him as “Ernest” as soon as possible.
The Jack’s internal conflicts as mentioned above causes the plot develops into climax, that is the revelation of his being Ernest. Although his undercover of being Ernest in the end is revealed, he still afraid of being left by Gwendolen. What he afraid of at last become true. Gwendolen goes angry and does not want to talk to him.
Jack’s inner conflicts develop to approach a clue about his origin. Here is the falling action of the plot appears. He still confuses who really he is, as he, in fact, still has the handbag. Miss Prism’s statement is the first clue. The she points to Lady Bracknell when Jack pushes her to tell the truth about his parents. He understands and believes that he is Ernest when Lady Bracknell tells everything. What a happy moment and really a surprise when he realizes that Algernon is his brother.
The same internal conflict occurs to Algernon as well. Commonly, Algernon has the same problem as Jack, that is about their dual identity. Algernon’s created friend, “Bunbury”, is an object for him to refuse Lady Bracnell’s dinner invitation. Hereinafter, he is interested to use the name of Ernest to flirt Cecily. As the result, he gets the impact as Jack does. He has to choose the name Algernon or being Ernest who is loved by Cecily. Of course, he chooses the name Ernest, because Cecily is very charming and crazy about Ernest more than he knows.
The internal conflict of Algernon also causes the plot develops into climax, because the revelation of his character by Cecily happens at the same time as Jack. The appearance of Gwendolen at Manor House is the main cause. She thought that Cecily has been misunderstanding about Ernest, because the “Ernest” as Cecily known is Gwendolen’s cousin. In addition, Cecily clear up Gwendolen that her “Ernest” is Cecily’s guardian.
Cecily. [Very sweetly.] I knew there must be some misunderstanding, Miss Fairfax. The gentleman whose arm is at present round your waist is my guardian, Mr. John Worthing. (Wilde, 1959: 52)
Gwendolen. I felt there was some slight error, Miss Cardew. The gentleman who is now embracing you is my cousin, Mr. Algernon Moncrieff. (Wilde, 1959: 53)

Finally, Jack confesses that he have no brother named Ernest. Therefore, both Algernon and Jack’s identity are disclosed. It makes Gwendolen and Cecily upset and disappointed.
Jack. [Slowly and hesitatingly.] Gwendolen - Cecily - it is very painful for me to be forced to speak the truth. It is the first time in my life that I have ever been reduced to such a painful position, and I am really quite inexperienced in doing anything of the kind. However, I will tell you quite frankly that I have no brother Ernest. I have no brother at all. I never had a brother in my life, and I certainly have not the smallest intention of ever having one in the future. (Wilde, 1959: 54)

While the external conflicts of the main characters influences the plot are begun with the conflict between Jack and Algernon or Algernon and Jack. The cigarette case is as the main cause of their conflict. Algernon suspects Jack has another woman named Cecily. Therefore, he will not let him to propose Gwendolen before Jack explains about the woman (Cecily).
The conflict above is a beginning of the exposition of the plot which contains several obstacles faced by Jack and Algernon. The first conflict relates to the next conflict namely between Jack and Lady Bracknell. Lady Bracknell refuses to give her consent to their engagement, Jack and Gwendolen.
Lady Bracknell. Pardon me, you are not engaged to any one. When you do become engaged to some one, I, or your father, should his health permit him, will inform you of the fact. An engagement should come on a young girl as a surprise, pleasant or unpleasant, as the case may be. It is hardly a matter that she could be allowed to arrange for herself... And now I have a few questions to put to you, Mr. Worthing. While I am making these inquiries, you, Gwendolen, will wait for me below in the carriage. (Wilde, 1959: 17)

Lady Bracknell considers Jack as man with a misfortune because he has lost his both parents. She will not give her consent until he found his parent. It is the rising action of the plot.
Another external conflict is faced by Algernon towards Jack. Jack does not allow Algernon to know his address in the country, because he knows if Algernon knows it, Algernon would try to attract Cecily, and he does not want it happens.
Algernon. Where is that place in the country, by the way?
Jack. That is nothing to you, dear boy. You are not going to be invited... I may tell you candidly that the place is not in Shropshire. (Wilde, 1959: 9)

As  Algy is a smart man, He uses his chance to know Jack’s address when Gwendolen meets Jack to ask his address. Carefully Algernon listen behind.
The Algernon’s conflict above causes the advance of the plot into rising action. He plans to meet Cecily at Manor House alone. It is what he called “bunburying”.
The climax is the revelation of Jack’s secret about his brother Ernest. Then it is followed by revelation of Algernon identity in front of Cecily and Gwendolen.
Since Jack knows that Algernon has arrived at Manor House, he goes mad because he knows Algernon’s intention. Then Gwendolen comes to see her “Ernest” at Manor House. At last, both Cecily and Gwendolen identify that there is no one named Ernest, as Algernon and Jack have been telling the untruth about their name.
Gwendolen (severely) Had you never a brother of any kind?
Jack. (pleasantly) Never. Not even of any kind. (Wilde, 1959: 54)

The climax above can be included that it is due to the conflict between Jack and Algernon. If Jack told his address to Algernon and give his consent to Algernon to love Cecily, their real identity would not revealed.
The climax goes down to falling action of Jack’s origin. Miss Prism is the first key to reveal Jack’s origin. She is actually the person who abandoned a baby at Victoria Station. The baby is Jack. Jack thought she is his mother, but she does not. She points her finger at someone who can explain all about him, she is Lady Bracknell. Lady Bracknell, in fact, is Jack’s aunt, because his mother is Lady Bracknell’s sister. Moreover, Algernon is his brother.
Lady Bracknell. I am afraid that the news I have to give you will not altogether please you. You are the son of my poor sister, Mrs. Moncrieff, and consequently Algernon’s elder brother. (Wild\e, 1959: 71)

The plot is ended with the resolution of Jack’s original name. Based on the information he got from his aunt, Lady Bracknell, he found his original name on army lists. And proudly he said that his name is Ernest.
 Jack. … I always told you, Gwendolen, my name was Ernest, didn’t I? Well, it is Ernest after all. I mean it naturally is Ernest. (Wilde, 1959: 73)

The writer considers that both falling action and resolution are influenced by the conflict of between Jack and Miss Prism. If he did not meet Miss Prism, he would never know his origin and his original name.


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