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MonkeyNotes-The Turn of the Screw by Henry James
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In 1898, James shifted his residence to an eighteenth century house in Sussex. In the following years, he published some of his best works like The Ambassadors, The Wings of Dove and The Golden Bowl. In the words of Barbara Hardy, “The last fifteen years of James’s life were the first years of a new century, in old and new genres of travel, biography and autobiography, but above all in fiction and literary criticism.” These novels show a shift in the style and character study.

In 1904, he undertook a journey to America. He was shocked to observe the changed American scenario. He recorded his feelings in The American Scene. The First World War dejected him further. In 1915, after becoming a naturalized British citizen, he wrote an article for New York Times (Feb.1915) that reflected his despondency.


Henry James was an established literary figure by now. He was admired by his readers and respected by his critics for his wit and masterly technique. In 1911, he received an honorary degree from Harvard University in America and in 1912, from the University of Oxford. On his seventieth birthday in 1913, over two hundred and fifty friends honored him. In 1916, just before his death, he received the Order of Merit from the British government.

Henry James wrote till the time of his death. He penned a great variety of books. He wrote a novel called The Wings of Dove, autobiographical writings like A Small Boy and Others, Notes of a Son and Brother and Middle Years and letters like Letters from America. He suffered two strokes but went on writing till he breathed his last on February 28, 1916. James died but left a legacy of literary writings that will be read and remembered for their unique style, psychological depth and character study.

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