Cover of first edition
|Genre||Speculative fiction | Gothic fiction|
|Publisher||Farrar, Straus and Young|
|ISBN||978-0143107040 current edition, published by Penguin|
|Preceded by||'The Road Through the Wall|
|Followed by||'The Lottery and Other Stories|
Hangsaman is a 1951 gothic novel by American author Shirley Jackson. The second of Jackson's published novels, Hangsaman is a bildungsroman centring on lonely college freshman Natalie Waite, who descends into madness after enrolling in a liberal arts college.
The novel takes its title from an old folk ballad and was partially inspired by the disappearance of Paula Jean Welden in 1946. Jackson's text mixes satire with psychological elements as her protagonist spends half her time in an imaginary world.
In Jackson's papers, currently held at the Library of Congress, she indicates that she was partially inspired to write Hangsaman after the disappearance of 18-year-old Paula Jean Welden, who set out for a "long walk" on December 1, 1946, and never returned. At the time, Jackson was living in Bennington, Vermont, as her husband, Stanley Edgar Hyman, was employed at Bennington College, where Welden also attended university.
Hangsaman tells the story of Natalie Waite, whose longing to move away from an oppressive home environment sees her attend a liberal arts school similar to Bennington College.
- "Shirley Jackson's Horror Novel 'Hangsaman' Was Inspired By A Real-Life Disappearance". Bustle. Retrieved 2019-10-31.
- "HANGSAMAN, THE BIRD'S NEST, AND THE SUNDIAL BY SHIRLEY JACKSON". Retrieved 17 Mar 2015.
- "Notes on Hangsaman -- Shirley Jackson (1951)". Retrieved 17 Mar 2015.
- "Old School Wednesdays Readalong: Hangsaman by Shirley Jackson". Retrieved 17 Mar 2015.
- "Mass-Market Marathon". Retrieved 17 Mar 2015.
- "YOU MIGHT NEVER FIND YOUR WAY BACK: SHIRLEY JACKSON'S HANGSAMAN". Retrieved 17 Mar 2015.
- Parks, John G. (1984). "Chambers of Yearning: Shirley Jackson's Use of the Gothic". Twentieth Century Literature. 30 (1): 15–29. doi:10.2307/441187. ISSN 0041-462X.
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