This past weekend was the last weekend of The Importance of Being Earnest at Stevenson and I had the privilege of seeing it. The cast was fantastic and so true to the characters. I absolutely adore Oscar Wilde and this is one of my favorite plays. I enjoyed my time immensely. I also enjoyed getting to learn more about the Aesthetic Movement that Oscar Wilde was immersed in, courtesy of Dr. Anissa Sorokin. The Aestheic Movement, also called the cult of beauty, held the belief of "art for art's sake". Art did not need to have a deeper meaning than to simply be something to be admired for its beauty. The Importance of Being Earnest is representative of this. The play holds messages of social expectations and the idea that nothing in society is as it seems. It functions as a comment on the society that it was written in, which led many to believe there was no real message in it at the time of its publication.
I would also like to give a warm welcome to the newest member of our English faculty. Anissa Sorokin received her Ph.D. in Language, Literacy, and Culture from UMBC. She also holds an M.A. in Linguistics from Georgetown University and an M.A. in Education from Temple University. Prior to joining Stevenson's faculty, she directed UMBC's Writing Center from 2013-2016 and managed faculty and academic programs at StraighterLine, a higher education technology start-up in Federal Hill, from 2016-2018. In her free time, she loves writing and recording music and collecting and researching antique pottery and porcelain. She lives in Bowie, MD with her husband, her 14-month old son, and seven cats (who are a lot less useful than seven dwarves, as it turns out).