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The Haunting of Hill House

The Haunting of Hill House” is one of my favorite novels by author Shirley Jackson. It was made into a movie twice. The version I like the best is “The Haunting” in 1963 starring such fine actresses from that time like Julie Harris and Claire Bloom. The movie was black and white and very haunting and suspenseful. Here is the trailer of the movie.

The second version “The Haunting” came out in 1999 and was a very much modernized version making a frightful old haunted house almost seem like a theme park attraction. I didn’t like it at all. Presently The Haunting has also been developed into a Netflix series.

Shirley Jackson’s short story “The Lottery” is assigned in English classes all over the U.S. Even though she was successful she suffered depression her whole life long as well as anxiety and felt oppressed in her own home. She became her family’s main breadwinner but her husband controlled her finances and expected his wife to turn her head on his philandering.

The problems she endured in her life became expressed in different ways in her novels. In “The Haunting of Hill House” and “We Have Always Lived in the Castle” she creates an atmosphere of unease and dread while questioning the very idea of home.


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  1. i remember taking women in literature class after I was out of college. I was thinking about a master’s in creative writing at the time.

    Virginia Wolf, Doris Lessing and Shirley Jackson’s works were all covered as the struggle of women.


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