Henry James, OM (15 April 1843 – 28 February 1916) was an American-English writer who spent most of his writing career in Britain. He is regarded as one of the key figures of 19th-century literary realism. He was the son of Henry James, Sr. and the brother of philosopher and psychologist William James and diarist Alice James.
James alternated between America and Europe for the first 20 years of his life; eventually, he settled in England, becoming a British subject in 1915, one year before his death. He is best known for a number of novels showing Americans encountering Europe and Europeans. His method of writing from the point of view of a character within a tale allows him to explore issues related to consciousness and perception, and his style in later works has been compared to impressionist painting.
James contributed significantly to literary criticism, particularly in his insistence that writers be allowed the greatest possible freedom in presenting their view of the world. James claimed that a text must first and foremost be realistic and contain a representation of life that is recognizable to its readers. Good novels, to James, show life in action and are, most importantly, interesting. His imaginative use of point of view, interior monolog and unreliable narrators in his own novels and tales brought a new depth and interest to narrative fiction. An extraordinarily productive writer, in addition to his voluminous works of fiction he published articles and books of travel, biography, autobiography, and criticism, and wrote plays, some of which were performed during his lifetime, though with limited success when compared to the success of his novels. James was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1911, 1912 and 1916.
Italian Hours is a travel book written by Henry James trough several years of exploration of Italy. James loved very much Venice, Rome, Ravenna and many other Tuscany cities.
In the Cage is a novella about a woman who works in London as a telegraphist. The unnamed protagonist of this story do display a lively imagination and a nearly photographic memory, and a particular attitude in reading other people’s telegrams, being aware of many secrets…
The Aspern Papers was first published in London by Henry James in 1888 in «The Atlantic Monthly» and by Macmillan & Co. in the same year.
The Europeans is a short comedy first published in the periodical «The Atlantic Monthly» in 1878. In the same year, this novel appeared both in England and in the USA by Macmillan & Co. and Houghton, Osgood & Co.
The Figure in the Carpet was first published in the periodical «Cosmopolis» in 1896. In the same year, the same novel appeared both in England and in the USA in a volume titled Embarrassments.
The Beast in the Jungle was first published in London by Henry James in 1903 by Methuen Publishing in the collection The Better Sort. It’s one of the most famous novellas about by Henry James about the meaning of life, death, love and fate.
“Daisy Miller” was first published in England by Henry James in 1878 in «Cornhill Magazine», and then in 1979 by Harper & Brothers. The Author takes as a pretext the life of the beautiful Daisy to show prejudices and different thoughts of Americans towards Europeans and vice versa. In a letter, James said that Daisy is the victim of a «social rumpus» that goes on either over her head or beneath her notice.
“The Turn of the Screw” was published by Henry James in 1898 in the USA. It is a gothic story novella in which the Author tells us a ghost story in a non-stereotypical way: ghosts are weird extensions of everyday reality. Nonetheless, James refers to the classical Gothic fiction.
“The Altar of the Dead” was published by Henry James in 1895 in the USA. It is a fable on life and death significance.