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Critical Analysis of The Canterville Ghost

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Actually, when I was first introduced to the book by my teacher I look at the title and had the very first thought that is was a very scary one, I assume that for anyone who will be reading this book will find it the same way, but let me tell you something I can assure you that it’s really not scary at all rather, I would describe it as more of a comedy and clever satire created by Wilde. (“Talking about Oscar Wilde is an Irish writer and poet, he is remembered for his epigrams and plays, his parent were successful Anglo-Irish Dublin intellectuals. And In the process, Wilde became one of the best-known personalities of his day”). And for the story Canterville Ghost it had been filmed in 1944.

The Canterville Ghost is a having a horror literature genre. As it takes place in an English Country Villa, named Canterville Chase, which had been haunted for centuries by the Ghost named Centerville Ghost i.e. Sir Simon, Lord Canterville always felt that he should warn the people who come to live in the villa about him, so one day arrives a wealthy American family called the Otis family which consisted of the parents Mr. Otis and Mrs. Otis, the children (The twins, Washington and Virginia), who did not believe in ghosts. And to take them out Lord Canterville had given his best shot to the family as he had done it to others, but the Otis family weren’t afraid of him even after the best possible shot given by him they refused to get frightened !. For the main argument kept by Wildes was to create an atmospheric mysterious setting, which was the typical “British haunted house”, with a practical American Family who had an amusing way of reacting to the appearance of the lord Canterville.

Now talking about the characters in the plot, I believed that the main character was the Ghost i.e. lord Canterville which the story was revolving around he was more of a helpless guy, who likes to wear different clothes, I believe making him look a pathetic figure, next to him was the only daughter of Mr. Otis i.e. Virginia who was more of a gentle and a noble person, and was determined to help the ghost. The twins had played a great role at the initial, when they were actually trying to get the ghost scared instead of getting scared by themselves, taking references for the plot when the ghost tried to scare them they brought two pillows to hit him,I mean don’t you find this interesting a ghost in a pillow fight there are so many instances where you will find such kind of humor going on, being one is when the ghost was laughing demonically he was offered tincture and lubricator for his rusted chains. So, After being Embarrassed by the family the ghost had lost his hope of scaring the family out and the daily routine in which he used to appear in the villa also stopped, but when Virginia saw him sitting lonely, she could not resist herself from helping him, because she was feeling pity for him which was the ray of hope for the ghost. As an instance, once one day, the ghost said that he wanted to ‘sleep’. Where he took Virginia along with him to the Garden of Death. Where finally, the family had found the skeleton in a room. Which belonged to the ghost, and the ghost was finally buried in peace. And asked Virginia who was his only friend to meet and pray for him.

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The writing style was an appropriate one and the plot was flowing comfortably.

As we can see Wilde was clearly having a situation where he was having fun creating British and American stereotypes and using them to survey ethnic differences, though he had done in an amusing and harmless way. Another thing that was eye-catching was that some of the stories unfolded from the ghost’s perspective so that our condolence is with him more than of the family.

Although the ending had a sweet and emotional taste to it, I really took delight and got fascinated by this unfamiliar little book! which Made It funny, full of imagination, and making it suitable for the younger and for the adults too.

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Critical Analysis of The Canterville Ghost. (2022, August 12). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 29, 2023, from
“Critical Analysis of The Canterville Ghost.” Edubirdie, 12 Aug. 2022,
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Critical Analysis of The Canterville Ghost [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Aug 12 [cited 2023 Sept 29]. Available from:
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