Henry James's - The Turn of the Screw.
From the moment of its publication, The Turn of the Screw has continuously been a challenge both for the common reading and for criticism. We, the readers, when being unaware of its complexity, may be very easily carried away and fall into all the traps provided by the intricacies of the text.
The value, and of course, the beauty of the The Turn of the Screw lies in its challenging and well-constructed "interpretive dilemma" which we have to face. Guided by the will of knowledge and of making sense, understanding is our basic expectation when reading the short-story. We are willing and quite eager to sign "the fictional pact" and accept the world of the text as a true one, actually as a possible one. The text seems to undermine these very facts, as it is liable to any kind of interpretation. After finishing reading, we feel puzzled and frustrated which is due to the sudden ending, in contrast with the extended beginning.
Bearing in mind the fact that "the Prologue" plays the most important part in the organization of the text, we have to read it very carefully. We have to read it somehow prejudiced in order to understand it. A few details about the author of The Turn of the Screw should not be neglected. Henry James, as am American novelist who had lived more in England than in The United States, had a rich cross-culture experience. So he was highly interested in the relationship between "the local" and "the alien", in the intersubjective relationship between "the foreigner intruding in", and "the local". The author was very likely to be attracted by the idea of placing his main characters in new settings and of watching their reactions, the stages of their response process. Moreover, having a journalistic training, Henry James was preoccupied by the detail as a notion. In The Turn of the Screw the details are the prevailing elements. We have to read the short-story so that we should not miss one single detail (which, actually, is impossible).