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javafork
11-16-2005, 09:49 PM
I'm currently doing a study of the governesses self deception in turn of the screw, so far i've touched on the fact that she is in love with her employer and thinks being ignored is his way of showing his trust in her etc, also that she believes she knows what is best for the children although clearly does not, but really i'm totally stuck, anyone got any ideas about self deception? please......i'm totally stressing!

Ann Ganon
01-23-2007, 10:38 AM
I'm currently doing a study of the governesses self deception in turn of the screw, so far i've touched on the fact that she is in love with her employer and thinks being ignored is his way of showing his trust in her etc, also that she believes she knows what is best for the children although clearly does not, but really i'm totally stuck, anyone got any ideas about self deception? please......i'm totally stressing!

Marcel Duchamp painted a famous picture in l900 called "Nude Descending the Staircase." It's wasn't about a nude at all, it was about deceiving and confusing the viewer. Self-deception is a good and universal theme though. Stick with it. It is a vital part of the human condition starting with Adam and Eve in the Garden. (Gen 3). James is doing the same thing as DuChamp. HE is the one in self-deception and confusing the reader is his form of self-justification for doing it. He is being purposely ambiguous. Melville and many others do the same thing.
Some things are clear. Human beings are rational. We want and need clear answers. James purposely does not give them. The reality he portrays is not reality. I don't think we can even try to take him seriously on this one, we can only point out his own inconsistencies.