Barn Burning by William Faulkner Essay

Barn Burning by William Faulkner Essay

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In the tale Barn Burning, the author William Faulkner formally known for his short stories with a constant theme of Southern Renaissance, racism and modernism uses these themes as a constant reference throughout the story. Faulkner focuses in depth on the antagonist, Abner Snopes and his actions and how they impact other characters throughout the story. I believe Abner was continuously portrayed as a negative character throughout the short story by Abner’s aggressiveness towards everyone he comes in contact with, Faulkner’s depiction of Abner’s selfishness, and his jealousy for those around him and what he did not have.
In the short story Barn Burning, William Faulkner sets the scene in a courtroom located in a corner store market. Protagonist, Abner Snopes, was being accused of burning down Mr. Harris’s barn. Because of this, the Snopes family gpt forced to leave the country and never come back. They then moved to a beautiful new place where Abner worked as a sharecropper for Major De Spain. Not long after working for them, Abner ruined their valuable rug by intentionally tracking horse manure onto it. When told to clean it he used soap that completely destroyed it. Major de Spain fined Abner 20 bushels of corn, which caused Abner dto take Major De Spain to court. The Justice only deducts the punishment from 20 bushels to 10 bushels of corn. Due to Abner's rage he plots to burn Major de Spains house by instructing Sarty to gather kerosene. Meanwhile Sarty cautioned Major De Spain about his father’s motives. And lastly, three gun shots went off, but Sarty had no desire to look back to see who was killed.
I believe the author was successful while portraying Abner as a negative character, to begin after Harris demanded a dollar f...


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...n’s beautiful house he thought his father would finally be loyal to the owners. The twelve other times the Snopes family moved; all the owners were usually small in a poor country. Sarty could not come up with a reason for his father to do anything threatening to this prized family, however his immoralities stayed constant. Abner’s resentfulness for white people and blacks with better social status added to his antagonism often released onto Sarty. Faulkner clearly stated his beliefs about the main character Abner Snopes throughout the short story by Faulkner’s portrayal of Abners aggressiveness towards everyone, Faulkner’s depiction of Abners selfishness, and his jealousy for those around him and what he did not have.












Works Cited

Faulkner, William. Barn Burning. First Vintage International ed. N.p.: Random House, 1950. Print. The Country.

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