the figure at the window

“Holding my candle high, till I came within sight of the window.” Henry James, Turn of the Screw (Collier’s Weekly) @ Yale/Beinecke

On one occasion, Caroline Gordon sent Flannery O’Connor an essay she’d been writing on Henry James titled “The Figure at the Window on the Carpet.”

O’Connor wrote to Gordon [12 May 1952], “I am certainly indebted to you for letting me see this piece and I think it ought to be a book. If Catholic novels are bad, current Catholic criticism is PURE SLOP or else it’s stuck off in some convent where nobody can get his hands on it. Sr. Mariella Gable ought to disguise herself as Freudina Potts and undermine the Partisan Review from inside. She could send the whole place to the devil.”

While one version of Gordon’s essay included a discussion of Wise Blood [see The Letters, FO to CG, 29 January 1953], Gordon’s final draft did not include O’Connor’s work.

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