All those interested in Spiritualism, ghosts and psychotherapy may be interested to know that Henry James classic story “The Turn of the Screw” is running at Derby Theatre as a play from 7th – 11th May.
Written in 1898 during the Golden Age of Spiritualism ( see my book! ), James was a member of the hugely influential Society for Psychical Research, an institution led by academics, scientists, philosophers and lawyers, which still prospers today. His brother, William James, was one of the great psychologists of the 20th century and a founding member of the American Society for Psychical Research ,as well as being a disciple of Swedenborg. Those influences are a vital part of this Gothic ghost tale and psychological drama.
The chilling story revolves around a Governess looking after two children who come under attack from supernatural beings. Is this “real” ? Is it in her imagination? Is she covering up her own misdeeds? These questions have intrigued audiences for over a century. The ghosts are presented as eerie extensions of everyday reality, with the exact lines blurred, unsettling everyone.
It is a brilliant play with Janet Dibley, of Coronation St, East Enders and Two of Us fame taking the lead role of Governess.
For more information on the Society for Psychical Research, Swedenborg, and other key players from this era, visit my website to purchase my book “The Golden Age of Spiritualism”.