The Turn Of The Screw Essay

The Turn Of The Screw Essay

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In The Turn of the Screw the story moves further from a ghost story and more to the point of a psychological tale as the governess ' visions are disproved when her, Flora and companion Mrs. Grose fail to see the apparition that the governess sees at the lake.  In the beginning of the book we are introduced to Douglas, who is staying in a house through the Christmas Holiday, where it is tradition to all sit around the fire and tell ghost stories. He talks up the story he reads stating “It’s beyond everything. Nothing at all that I know touches it” (James, 3).
The governess starts the story by explaining her nervousness in the start of her new job saying that she "found myself doubtful again, felt indeed sure I had made a mistake” (James, 7). She was relieved when she arrived at the house and was greeted with such respect by Mrs. Grose and her very cherished, Flora. She thought Flora was the most beautiful child she had ever seen. She also finds relief in the fact that Mrs. Grose agrees with her on most aspects and stands by her in everything. On her first day she asks Flora to show her around the grounds to better acquaint herself to her surroundings and new home.  
When the second child is brought up, she is in charge of is expelled from school for reasons unknown, and is needed to be picked up and brought back to the house, she is nervous and consults Mrs. Grose to see if Miles is a bad kid. Mrs. Grose tells her that he has been bad but in the way that boys are bad, and asks her to "See him, miss, first. THEN believe it” (James, 11). This helps her immensely in calming down and eases her mind for the drive to go and retrieve him and bring him home. As they talk of Miles ' behavior our governess inquires as to how the old governes...


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... him again about what happened and all that he tells her is that “Well- I said things” (James, 76).
He goes on to tell her that he said these things to people he liked, but somehow it got back to the headmaster. He never does get to tell her what he said because during their conversation she sees the ghost of Peter Quint. She loses it and tries to tackle and kill the trace. Miles looks all around and doesn’t see the ghost. This is when I think the story breaks from that of a ghost story to that of a psychological break, because she believes that she has startled the ghost who has fallen and she thinks she has caught him in his fall “I caught him, yes, I held him-it may be imagined with what a passion; but at the end of a minute I began to feel what it truly was that I held. We were alone with the quiet day, and his little heart, dispossessed, had stopped” (James, 7).

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