The Haunting Of Hill House Essay

Words: 1909
Pages: 8

“Books are a uniquely portable magic,” said famed horror author Stephen King. Horror, especially, is a portal inside the mind. While most associate horror with blood, gore, and the supernatural, the true meaning of horror is to serve as a portal to the psyche of the author, the characters, and the first audience of the work. Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw, and Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House are paragons to the importance of understanding these psyches and the intentions and values of the author. In analyzing Dracula, The Haunting of Hill House, and The Turn of the Screw, the three components of Freud’s consciousness theory, the opinions and beliefs of the author, and the evolution of character archetypes …show more content…
As someone who knew the stigma of not being the average type of person to write horror and mystery novels, Jackson took her chance to represent different genders, sexualities, and classes in The Haunting of Hill House. Eleanor, the lead protagonist of Hill House, was a strong and independent female character who has legitimate character traits and an actual plotline. In addition to Eleanor’s gender, she was not bogged down by a macho hero who was looking to save the day and get the girl. Eleanor’s only possible love interest is ambiguously hinted to be Theodora, whose own sexuality is also open for interpretation. In addition to the exploration of feminine, and possibly homosexual, themes, Jackson introduces a class battle undercurrent. The rivalry between Luke, the heir to Hill House, and Eleanor and Theodora, both of whom struggle with finances and are more free spirited shows the different lifestyles and decisions that can affect anyone’s own situation. Despite not being gay or, necessarily, poor, herself, Jackson dove deep into these themes to shine a light on these people when no one else