The Old South By William Faulkner

978 Words4 Pages
Throughout the many novels and short stories written by William Faulkner he detailed the post-Civil War American south. The Nobel Prize winning writer grew up in Oxford, Mississippi during a period of reconstruction in the “old south.” Many of his works took place in a made up town that was modeled after Oxford. Faulkner used real life experiences to write memorable stories with a hidden truth. His works reflected a painful period in American history and a transitional phase in the “old south.” In fact, in Faulkner’s works he gave a glimpse of how discrimination, social classification, and modernization. For example, Faulkner described the discrimination that blacks faced in many of his writings. In the “old south,” blacked endured heavy discrimination and faced numerous challenges. After the American Civil War, blacks or “niggers” as commonly referred to did not have the same privileges as their white counterparts. They only held jobs as laborers or servants and were not viewed as equals to whites. Many of Faulkner’s works were loosely based on the things he witnessed growing up in Mississippi during the early 1900s. In Faulkner’s “Barn Burning,” Colonel Satoris Snopes asked his father “Ain’t you going to even send a nigger?” he cried. “At least you sent a nigger before!” (489) Faulkner subtly hints at the racist views that were passed down by parents of the post-Civil War South. Another example of this is in Faulkner’s “A Rose for Emily” when Judge Stevens said “It’s probably just a snake or rat that nigger of hers killed in the yard. I’ll speak with him about it.” (100) He referred to the black servant as if he were just a piece of property, not as a human. Many of Faulkner’s works included instances that blacks were vie... ... middle of paper ... ...cation, and modernization of the “old south.” Faulkner’s works painted a vivid picture of the America through the eyes of his numerous characters. He explored the discrimination and struggles that blacks faced following the American Civil War. Faulkner also analyzed the part that social classification and status played in society during a time of traditional living. Lastly, he revisited the modernization of America, particularly the south during a period “Reconstruction.” Aside from being a Nobel Prize winning writer, William Faulkner was one of the most influential figures of literature in the twentieth century. His works held hidden truth that explored America during one of most controversial times in history. Most of Faulkner’s writings were fictitious, but gave a real feeling of the “old south.” William Faulkner will be forever remembered in American Literature.
Open Document