Shirley Jackson

We Have Always Lived in the Castle

  • 9-page comprehensive study guide
  • Features summaries and expert analysis on the narrative's 3 acts
  • Written by a literary scholar with a Master's degree in English Literature
Access Full Summary
Study Guide Navigation

We Have Always Lived in the Castle Summary & Study Guide

SuperSummary, a modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, offers high-quality study guides for challenging works of literature. This 9-page guide for “We Have Always Lived in the Castle” by Shirley Jackson includes a detailed 3-act summary and analysis, as well as several more in-depth sections of expert-written literary analysis. Featured content includes 5 important quotes.


  • Author: Shirley Jackson
  • Publication date: September 21, 1962
  • Genre: Fiction
  • Category: Mystery, Gothic Fiction, Psychological Fiction
  • Format: Novel
  • Setting: Modern New England
  • Protagonist: Mary Katherine “Merricat” Blackwood
  • Antagonist: Charles Blackwood and the townspeople
  • POV: First-person past tense, unreliable narrator
  • Main themes: Family, prejudice, otherness, trauma, loss, mental illness
This is just a preview. The entire section has 101 words. Click below to download the full study guide for We Have Always Lived in the Castle.

Act I