The Canterville Ghost was one of the most popular short stories written by Oscar Wilde, and the first to be published, in 1887. The story of the Canterville Ghost takes place in an old English country house, Canterville Chase, which is haunted by Sir Simon’s ghost. When an American family, The Otises, buy the house, the Old World (England) clashes with the New (America).
In this novel, Wilde mixes the macabre with comedy, juxtaposing aspects of traditional English ghost stories with symbols of modern American consumerism. Wilde’s Gothic setting emphasizes the contrast between the cultures of traditional England and modern America.
The main character in the story is the ghost himself, Sir Simon, who tries in every way, but unsuccessfully, to upset and terrify the Otises.
The notes and exercises which accompany the text also aid comprehension. The teaching material at the end of each chapter reinforces the knowledge of vocabulary and grammar and provides practice for improving communication skills.