Daisy Miller-Turn Of The Screw Essay, Research Paper
Henry James does an extraordinary job in establishing innocence in two distinguishable scenarios. Henry James, author of The Turn of the Screw and Daisy Miller uses somewhat of a superficial approach in using youth and beauty, in order to institute innocence. This is the basis for conflict in the stories. Youth in these particular cases are disguises; the reality is that these younglings have been corrupted over a short at some point in time. In both novellas tragedy ultimately brings an end to both stories.
The eyes are easily deceived by appearances. Through the character of Daisy Miller, Henry James, the author, addresses the problem of tragic innocence in uncultivated Americans. Daisy is created as the apex of American innocence, the ideal female. Her “daisy-like” attributes and commonness are evident at every turn. Her flirtatious ways, and constant need for male attention are the grounds for tragedy. The tragedy of the novella isn t Daisy s demise but her inability to develop a relationship with Winterbourne, the only one that truly saw her as innocent. She sins in forming a love affair with a man of lower social rank; this is looked upon negatively for the times. This rebellious act could be seen as her desire for attention. Her constant need for attention, especially that of males, is obviously derived from the neglectful ways of her father, the most influential man in her life. Daisy Miller was a young lady without direction.
The characters appearances in The Turn of the Screw are notably more deceiving than that of Daisy Miller, innocence is lacking to a greater degree. In this novella, James, constructs a story that is very ambiguous, leaving the story open to interpretation. His main intention was to unleash sexually desires that were repressed by society, the Victorian era. In the story class structures are violated, governesses are impregnated, children are sexually corrupted, and ghosts walk the halls at night. The Bly estate, which is the setting for The Turn of the Screw, is filled with immorally reprehensible events, which explains the behavior of the children, especially Miles. At first sight the governess sees Miles as an extraordinarily beautiful, a clever child with a fragrance of purity. She expresses similar feelings of Flora. Even though Miles is expelled from school for exhibiting inappropriate knowledge of sex, the governess still maintains her positive opinion of him. This knowledge he obtained from his close relationship with Peter Quint. Their purity is the reason why the governess protects the two from the evil ghosts, behaving like a mother. In the process of protecting Miles from one of the ghosts, the governess accidentally kills him, which is extremely ironic.
Without innocence both novellas would be pointless, without conflict, innocence in both stories play a big role in establishing a plot, but to different degrees. Beauty and youth are surprisingly destroyed by tragic endings, which are a result of character. In both The Turn of the Screw and Daisy Miller, Henry James makes it clear that your environment and background is responsible for the character that lies beneath that superficial shell. Purity cannot be assessed through mere sight.