From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Turn of the Screw

The Turn of the Screw

  

by Henry James

Foil

Character Role Analysis

Miss Jessel (to the Governess)

Miss Jessel is interestingly aligned with the Governess; after all, she was the previous governess. There are many ways in which the two women seem almost to be two sides of the same coin; the dead governess had desires that she acted out with Peter Quint, while the living one has desires that she can't or won't act on (she longs for her employer). One might see Miss Jessel as the Governess gone horribly wrong. This similarity is highlighted in two scenes: first, when the Governess accidentally sinks down on the staircase in the same place where she'd seen Miss Jessel's ghost earlier, and then in the schoolroom, where both of the women seem to have a certain right to be there – the Governess even feels like an intruder for a moment.


Advertisement