No. 2 Apparitions in “Turn of the Screw”
But the characters that almost missed out on the top spot are the apparitions or ghosts that appear in Henry James’ chilling novella “The Turn of The Screw”, published in 1898.
The story follows a governess who begins to see ghosts of her master’s former Valet, Mr Quint and her predecessor, Miss Jessel. Meanwhile, she struggles to protect her pupils, Miles and Flora from the supposed “corruption” from these ghosts.
What is most intriguing about the narrative is James’ ability to manipulate the reader and evoke terror through the ambiguity surrounding the ghost and the governess’ sanity. It is left unclear to the reader whether the ghosts are real of if they are merely part of the governess’ imagination. Perhaps it is both. The presence of the ghosts appear menacing to the governess because they are part of the supernatural, an abstract idea that cannot be explained, or is unfamiliar.
Don’t forget to come back tomorrow to see who made it to Number 1 in the Halloween Countdown. Its a fang-tastic character!