3PERSONAL INFORMATION Henry James was born in New York in 1843. He belonged to a rich family who could afford the private tutors and governesses that educated him, but he was above all a “devourer of books”.\-
4PERSONAL INFORMATIONHe was the brother of philosopher and psychologist William James.At the age of twenty-five he was recognized as the best short story writer in America.He never married.
5PERSONAL INFORMATIONFor many years he alternated visits to England, France and Italy to stays in the USA.In 1875 he decided that Europe was his ideal home and settled in Paris, where he met Flaubert and Maupassant.
6PERSONAL INFORMATIONThen he went to England where the most well-known writers of the period, such as Conrad and Kipling, accepted him as a friend and appreciated his books.
7PERSONAL INFORMATIONIn 1915 he became British subject. He died in London in 1916 and was buried in Massachusetts.In 1976 his ashes were removed to Poets’ corner in Westminster Abbey.
8The author and his timeHe never took part in public affairs or showed much interest in the economic and social changes of the period.
9The author and his timeHe was deeply interested in the contrast between the old world and the new one, between the European way of life, which he considered fascinating, sophisticated, rich in culture and tradition but corrupting, and the American one which he considered too rigid, Puritan but innocent.
10Psychological novelJames changed the method of presentation in a novel, shifting the centre of gravity from action to its intellectual and fantastic aspects: external circumstances lose significance before the inward events that take place in a soul.
11A new concept of the author James eliminates the author and gives the reader the illusion of being present at the scene of action.He presents events and the minds of the characters directly, without comments or explanations: Dramatize, only dramatize, is his lesson.
12THE TURN OF THE SCREWIt is a novelette, that is a short novel, a literary type in which James excelled.
13The Turn of the Screw as a gothic romance Gothic romances deal with an intense experience in a setting isolated from the conditions of everyday life.Moreover, opposed to the novel, romances deal with those things we can never fully know, that we can never be sure of.
14The Turn of the Screw as a gothic romance The tale is pervaded by an air of mysterious and of horror and terror, that doesn’t depend on what will happen but on what is happening.Finally, as in the Gothic romance, there is a strong undercurrent of sexuality and sadism, as well as a strange and nightmarish quality.
15The Turn of the Screw as a folk tale For its motif, that of children bewitched, enchanted by creature from another world-- or by the dead-- we can say that the TOTS is a folktale.
16The Turn of the Screw as a psychological study It deals not so much with ghosts but with their effects on those who see them.In many of James’s tales of the supernatural, the ghosts represent the past of the people that see them.