Thesis Of Turn Of The Screw
Self-sufficiency had already made of Jane Eyre the solitary and withdrawn ”eccentric,” as Virginia Woolf has it (155-61), connecting to her fancied mother as the moon, when she calls upon her to flee temptation. Fairfax, unable as she finds herself ”to draw her out” (Brontë 100). More profoundly Jane links to death from the Red Room episode onwards, by identifying with death from Lowood to Moor House. John, who will long for his own death in chapter 38.
In the same way, James’s governess utters her doomsday-like discourse of exorcism, sitting on ”a low table-like tomb” (Now the concept of the lost form expands within that of the phasing out of the plot of intricate and piled up family narratives.
Therefore recognition is defamiliarised, as any ’ can be, and becomes paradigmatic in the text, in a hypnotic sort of way.
One might say that James’s dogged evasiveness tends to place him decidedly ”in the reader-response camp,” as Edward Parkinson puts it in the ”Preface” to his dissertation on the history of the criticism of ’The Turn of the Screw.” Recognition might thus work as a wrong expectation turning sour.
James does rely on the assumption of a romantic pretext, in the manner of fables of the supernatural: the listening ladies, in the introduction, precisely ask what the governess’s ”reward” was—a term reminiscent of But the answer is: ”She never saw him again.” Douglas has no title either.
He is not entitled to satisfy the public’s expectation of yet another romance. Now if Brontë stages domesticity versus escape into the world by conflating two contradictory connotations, James focuses on the thematisation of reading as visualisation… Immersed in old novels, the governess reads characters into being—hence the appeal to archetypal narratives as enduring templates for all fictions.
Both Emily and the governess labour under that interdict which calls for a transgression: Emily does read an excerpt from the fateful papers—”a sentence of dreadful import”—and the governess does write despite the ban on writing; and they both suffer from visitations.Destiny is writ in hieroglyphic terms in century novels, Quint parading as a spurious master or whispered mysteries of hauntings, or implicit phrases and a pseudo-maternal legacy (Mrs.Grose), as pitted against the maleoriented letter writing from which the governess is excluded.James has conflated the two opposites into one, also relying on the guardian figure of the housekeeper either conniving in misdeeds, like Mrs. Jewkes in Epistolary discourse becomes thematised in ’The Turn of the Screw’, together with its vacuity: the letters do not reach their intended readers and the ghost (of the other—Miss Jessel) assumes the responsibility for writing—not to mention the issue of the alleged theft of the letter by Miles.It thus repeats frustration in writing moulded by the mystery of the interdict: woman called upon to take responsibility, but excluded from knowledge., insofar as the text of the novella relates to the ”governess novel” and to the question of a ”mystery” at Bly and its imprisoned inmate.A systematic study (by Alice Hall Petry) has gone a long way in demonstrating the overlap of the two texts, highlighting the concept of the role-playing governess: she would act out the character of Jane, ’The Turn of the Screw’ becoming a parody of Charlotte’s romantic novel.Edel’s contention is that James’s attempt was to enshrine that tradition in his story: ”The Brontë’s rather than the modern psychological movement nascent in Vienna” (Edel 433, quoted by Perry 62).James would then rank among the practitioners of the tropes familiar among his forerunners in the novel of sentiment and its stereotypes: ”the perceiving female subject, the Gothic structures […] and the explained supernatural” (Milbank 159).and ’The Turn of the Screw’ the school-room is a tantalising refuge for self-reflexivity.That is where Jane draws in chalk a self-portrait to materialise her introspective guilt and James’s governess faces the feminine ghost as a writing double.