Friday, May 22, 2009

The Puff Daddy of 19th century literature

"According to that monolithic temple to English etymology, The Oxford English Dictionary, the word 'dude' was birthed in New York in 1883, as a way to describe a certain fad of the time, an exaggerated foppishness among young men which was seen as an attempt to appear 'British.' This sudden fad may have been precipitated by the fact that Oscar Wilde visited New York in 1882 and was at that time the Western world’s most celebrated author and pre-eminent fop. This is not to say that he or they were mere narcissists. Just as today’s rock personalities manufacture affectations and overdoses of style, Oscar Wilde was the Puff Daddy of 19th century literature and the New York dudes fans and imitators of his 'outsider art.'"
(Oct. 31, 2008, The Dudespaper)

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