Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Bruce Baker


Shirley Jackson is best known as the author of such horror pieces as The Haunting of Hill House and her most famous story, "The Lottery." Although the frightening aspect of her work is unique and effective, readers and critics often respond to this alone. It seems that a more significant effect of her work lies in her portrayal of characters who must react to a wide variety of strange situations. Jackson combines her characters with unusual settings and incidents in a carefully balanced presentation that helps her portray human nature deeply. This paper will focus on a study of Jackson's development of definite patterns followed by her female characters: patterns which convey Jackson's view of humanity in which these characters function.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of English and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright 1975 Judith Moran Dirks.