The Turn Of The Screw Literary Analysis

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Ashley Dan ENG 478 Dr. Sciolino Draft #1 September 15, 2014 The Turn of the Screw In Henry James classic novella, The Turn of the Screw, the manuscript of a young governess is read to an awaiting crowd. The governess’s story starts when she is hired by an unnamed uncle to watch after his niece and nephew at his country estate, Bly. After making the decision to hire the governess, the uncle sets out some rules, but none were important than the uncle’s command that she in now way would contact him. The governess finds this strange, yet eagerly takes the job and sets off on her journey for Bly. The governess arrives at the estate and is overjoyed to find that Flora is simply angelic. After a few days they receive a letter notifying the…show more content…
When meeting Miles for the first time, the governess dismisses the decision of Miles’s headmasters and thinks to herself, “He had never for a second suffered. I took this as a direct disproof of his having really been chastised. If he had been wicked he would have "caught" it, and I should have caught it by the rebound I should have found the trace. I found nothing at all, and he was therefore an angel,” she even goes as far as to say that the headmasters are “stupid” and “sordid”. Though for the reader the children can be far from blameless and their intentions ambiguous at best. The governess believes the children to be completely innocent and that the ghosts of Peter Quint and Ms. Jessel to be harming the children. She so strongly believes this, it adds to her delusional state. The fact that the governess believes the children to be innocent beings simply upon her first glance of both Flora and Miles is telling of how gullible of a personality she has. No child, no matter how angelic they may look can be mischievous and is capable of doing…show more content…
Peter Quint and Ms. Jessel are shamed for the supposed liaison they had while they were employed at Bly. Instead of repressing their feelings like proper Victorian ladies and gentlemen they acted upon them. This allows the governess to demonize Quint and Jessel and make one of her snap judgments based on superfluous facts or observations. She looks at the children and deems them innocent and pure at first glance; she essentially does the same with Quint, marking him as a dark and intimidating character. However, ne of the stranger relationships in the novel, and even more so in the movie, is between the governess and Miles. Miles tends to put on an air that he is more mature than his actual age. There are several questionable moments between the governess and Miles. When Miles and the governess have been left alone at Bly a very disturbing tension permeates the air. The governess states that they were like “some young couple that, on their wedding journey, at the inn, feel shy in the presence of the waiter.” There is absolutely no reason the governess should feel or think this way about a young boy and again shows that she maybe closer to the ghosts of Quint and Ms. Jessel than she would like to believe. In the movie this relationship tends to come across as unseemly too, especially when Miles kisses the governess. This and the governesses kiss at the end of the

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