National Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Development

National Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Development


National Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Development
National Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Development
Vol. 3, Issue 1 (2018)

A critical study of the blackwood family in Shirley Jackson’s “We have always lived in the castle”


Shazia Qadri

We have always lived in the castle is a gothic novel by Shirley Jackson, it is arguably one of her finest works. The story of this novel revolves around the life of Blackwoods, who live in a secluded house, away from the hustle and bustle of the nearby village. The entire family has died in a tragic event of poisoning via arsenic except for the main character Mary Blackwood, her sister Constance Blackwood and their uncle Julian Blackwood. It was a perfectly normal routine dinner when John Blackwood, his wife Ellen and his sister-in-law Dorothy were poisoned by arsenic which was mixed with the sugar that they were consuming. Julian Blackwood was also at the dinner table but he was saved somehow, similarly, Constance and Merricat were also saved as the former didn’t consume sugar and the latter one was absent from the dinner table as a punishment. Jackson portrays something quite unusual for the 1960’s decade, the two sisters living with each other in a perfect harmony, despite knowing the fact that one among them is the murderer of their whole family. The power of family and the self-reliant nature of the two female protagonists is what this research paper will be discussing in detail.
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How to cite this article:
Shazia Qadri. A critical study of the blackwood family in Shirley Jackson’s “We have always lived in the castle”. National Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Development, Volume 3, Issue 1, 2018, Pages 347-348
National Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Development National Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Development