The Turn of the Screw & In the Cage

The Turn of the Screw & In the Cage

by Henry James

This Modern Library Paperback Classics edition brings together one of literature's most famous ghost stories and one of Henry James's most unusual novellas.

  • Language: English
  • Category: Fiction
  • Rating: 3.52
  • Pages: 231
  • Publish Date: May 8th 2001 by Modern Library
  • Isbn10: 0375757406
  • Isbn13: 9780375757402

What People Think about "The Turn of the Screw & In the Cage"

In A Thousand Plateaus, D&G use "In the Cage" and Fitzgerald's "The Crack Up" as examples of how novellas differ from novels and how writing can effect the reader and the world (and a example to their philosophy). I haven't read James in awhile and I forgot how his words and sentences are themselves vast cages that trap the reader in endless convention and pauses and circumlocutions; all to seemingly palpably enforce the constrictions his characters feel. I re-read Proust not so long ago, and their sentence structure seems similar, but it's not. So in Proust the entrapment of his long run-on sentences are very much about the much-ness of the world. Of how the world is full of over-encoded everything and how it's near impossible to "read" the world correctly and how it's impossible to know how your actions change the world as you go along.

The book just aches with alternating sense of attraction and repulsion to "dishonor." Its James at his most revealing.

James' story turns on this dilemma.

Having very little character interaction, it is not quite a page turner.

The Turn of the Screw Date I read this book: September 12th, 2014 On Christmas Eve ghost stories are being told around the fire and Douglas says his will chill them to their very bones, but he will only tell it in the words of his friend, who at the time was a young governess. Many many years ago my friends Matt and Becky and I were walking to the video store, you remember those, you could rent physical movies on these large clunky tapes that could get easily damaged and had to be rewound before returning. After looking for ages we decided on two movies, the new Hamlet staring Ethan Hawke and The Turn of the Screw, because, well, Colin Firth. Also the movie not sounding too much like a period piece, Matt agreed, and again, Colin Firth is hot. after this both my friends said I should pay them for having to watch the two movies because I had suggested them in the first place. I was left with two thoughts after watching the movie, one, false advertising, you put Colin Firth's name as a star he should be in more then five minutes, and two, evil wins!?! The Turn of the Screw is just a badly written story with enough wiggle room to allow for many interpretations of the text. If James can't be bothered to maintain a train of thought in a sentence it's no wonder the book is all over the place and ripe for adaptations that can take as many liberties as they want, because, let's face it, even James didn't know where his story was going. James uses the "framing" device of having a group of friends sitting around the fire telling each other ghost stories on Christmas Eve. I have no problem with this, what I do have a problem with is that this "framing" device was left unfinished and in the end was more of a prologue. I get that he might have wanted to end with the "shock value" of what happened to the insufferable Miles, but, well, the governess's story went on, she somehow got another job and came to meet Douglas and impart this story to him.

It is a brilliant story of class difference and, like in the "Turn of the Screw," of the power of even the most plausible imagination to create worlds that simply do not exist.

His method of writing from the point of view of a character within a tale allowed him to explore the phenomena of consciousness and perception, and his style in later works has been compared to impressionist painting.