Outside links about Shirley Jackson

Shirley Jackson's biographer concludes that despite the difficulties, Shirley most appreciated the villagers' respect for individual privacy. The biography quotes Shirley's son, Barry Hyman:

To be finished by 10/4/2016 (10 points - completion)

More than 250 contributors from leading media scholars around the world.

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On a bright spring morning in 1948, she walked down the Prospect hill with a baby stroller for a round of village errands. An hour or so later, Shirley Jackson pushed the stroller up the hill with newspapers, the mail, groceries -- and a story in mind. Once home, she set her toddler in the playpen and wrote "The Lottery" in less than two hours. It was posted to her agent that evening, and published in The New Yorker three weeks later (June 28, 1948).

“My son has been telling me all about him.”

The story created an immediate uproar. "The Lottery" describes a communal rite in a tidy Yankee village quite like the author's own. As generations of readers were shocked to learn, community order in the fictional village is nourished by solstice blood. The New Yorker's inbox was filled with complaints and subscription cancellations. Shirley Jackson became a national sensation.

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Shirley Jackson's "Charles" - Story of the Week

As for many readers, it took Hollywood to alert me to the Gothic genius of Shirley Jackson. In 1963, between West Side Story and The Sound of Music, director Robert Wise came to the UK. At Ettington Park in Warwickshire, he found an ideally spooky location for one of the few classic tales of psychological terror (as opposed to mere slasher-horror) in the mainstream movie canon.

08/10/2009 · Shirley Jackson, 1938

Shields, Patrick J. “Arbitrary Condemnation And Sanctioned Violence In Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery.” 7.4 (2004): 411-419. . Web. 18 Nov. 2014.

We eat the spring and the summer and the fall

Hypocrisy is thick today, but even more so in the years following World War II. Though the UDHR was not published until December of 1948 and “The Lottery” was published in June of 1948 the drafting of the UDHR had begun some two years earlier. This means that the central ideas of the UDHR had been floating around the general public for some time. Jackson wrote “The Lottery” to illustrate how hypocritical our society had become. Being horrified by the events of World War II, talking about the value of human life, yet still practicing the methods used by Hitler and basically ignoring the value of human life.

Charles got fresh with you, he let a poor girl get hurt on the see-saw..."

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Seen from a distance, Jackson's life looks almost like a lazy screenwriter's pastiche of the female Gothic author's plight. A busy home-maker confined in a creepy old New England house, she raises four kids while husband – critic Stanley Edgar Hyman – makes his name as a public intellectual and arbiter of taste. Not so much the madwoman in the attic as the sorceress at the sink, she rustles up deeply unsettling tales of mythic fury and supernatural power in between making breakfast, laundry and shopping trips. Much of the golden thread of Gothic and uncanny fiction in English passes through a female line – from Mary Shelley and Charlotte Bronte to Daphne du Maurier, Angela Carter, Susan Hill and Donna Tartt. But Jackson, more than most of her sisters in mystery, lived in and through the vast abyss between untamed imagination and domestic routine.

She could not bring herself to meet with any other teachers or parents at the PTA meeting.

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There is currently a revival of interest in Shirley Jackson's work. A recently discovered short story – "Paranoia" – was published in The New Yorker on July 29, 2013. A new biography was published in 2016 by the critic Ruth Franklin. All her work is back in print.

“Part II: History of the Death Penalty.” Death Penalty Information Center, 2014. Web. 17 Nov. 2014.

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Let Me Tell You – the new Penguin Classics collection of her unpublished stories, essays and lectures – contains an article entitled Here I am, Washing Dishes Again. Jackson did a nice line in mom-in-the-kitchen comic sketches – catnip for conservative 1950s magazine editors.