Edith Wharton/Henry James Book Club with Pam Jenning

Jacket Cover of Ghost Stories Jacket cover of the Turn of the Screw

Pam Jenning Bookclub

“Are We Not Spirits?” The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton and Henry James’ Novella The Turn of the Screw

Wednesday, October 11th & Wednesday October 25th -

$50 per person, includes the books and two sessions

The question “Are we not Spirits?” asked by Thomas Carlyle in 1836 was part of his reflection on Dr. Samuel Johnson’s longing to see a ghost. “What else are we?” he wonders, “Are we not Spirits, that are shaped into a body, into an Appearance, and that fade away again into air and Invisibility?” Carlyle suggests that Johnson should look around and within himself “into that full tide of human life he so loved” to find “a million Ghosts travelling the streets by his side.”

Like both Carlyle and Johnson and many other writers before and after them, Edith Wharton and Henry James have paid particular attention to ghosts. They clearly know how to tell a ghost story packed with Gothic conventions that deliver what Wharton calls a “thermometrical quality”, the ability to send a “cold shiver down one’s spine”. Yet Wharton and James also lead the reader into an engagement with their narratives’ human spirits whose subconscious conflicts, desires, and emotional and moral struggles give rise to the mirror-like apparitions we so fear.

Please join us at {pages} on October 11 and October 25 for a two-part series led by Pam Jenning on The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton and Henry James’ novella The Turn of the Screw. Participants need to read The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton prior to Session One’s book club discussion which will also include a short background lecture on the Wharton/James friendship and their major works, themes, and techniques. Session Two will focus on The Turn of the Screw.

Important!!! To fully benefit from the series, it is requested that you read the first book - The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton prior to session one on Wednesday, October 11th.


Event date: 
Wednesday, October 25, 2017 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
904 Manhattan Ave
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266


Includes The Turn of the Screw and The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton.  Please note that you should come to {pages} in advance to pick up your books so that you will have time to read them prior to the sessions.  It is recommended that you read The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton prior to the first session and The Turn of the Screw prior to the second session.