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Tales of Henry James: The Texts of the Stories, the Author on His Craft, Background and Criticism Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 75 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Tales of Henry James.
This section contains 867 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Tales of Henry James: The Texts of the Stories, the Author on His Craft, Background and Criticism Study Guide

Themes

Homoeroticism

Many of James' stories, including The Pupil, Brooksmith, the Aspern Papers and The Middle Years, involve intense emotional relationships between men, often between a younger man and an older man. Henry James was homosexual, a fact he hid during his life. There is great debate among critics on whether these characters were sexually involved with each other or not. James was certainly a good enough writer to have indirectly implied sex if he wanted to. However, he may have chosen not to due to the strict late-Victorian moral code, which denied that the "love that shall not be named" even existed.

A strong, intimate relationship occurred between the Brooksmith and his employer, Mr. Offord. In The Middle Years, author Duncombe develops a love for Dr. Hugh, which is returned. One of the most interesting pairs is the unnamed male narrator's passion for Jeffery Aspern, the dead poet. The...

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This section contains 867 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Tales of Henry James: The Texts of the Stories, the Author on His Craft, Background and Criticism Study Guide
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Tales of Henry James: The Texts of the Stories, the Author on His Craft, Background and Criticism from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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