Guilt should be viewed through the eyes of more than one person,
southern or otherwise. William Faulkner filters the story, Absalom, Absalom!,
through several minds providing the reader with a dilution of its representation.
Miss Rosa, frustrated, lonely, mad, is unable to answer her own questions
concerning Sutpen's motivation. Mr. Compson sees much of the evil and the
illusion of romanticism of the evil that turned Southern ladies into ghosts.
Charles Bon and Henry Sutpen are evaluated for their motives through Quentin
Compson and Shreve McCannon. Quentin attempt to evade his awareness, Shreve the
outsider (with Quentin's help) reconstructs the story and understands the
meaning of Thomas Sutpen's life. In the novel Absalom, Absalom!, a multiple
consciousness technique is used to reassess the process of historical
reconstruction by the narrators.
Chapter one is the scene in which Miss Rosa tells Quentin about the
early days in Sutpen's life. It's here that Rosa explains to Quentin why she
wanted to visit old mansion on this day. She is the one narrator that is unable
to view Sutpen objectively. The first chapter serves as merely an introduction
to the history of Sutpen based on what Miss Rosa heard as a child and her brief
The narration of Absalom, Absalom!, can be considered a coded activity.
Faulkner creates the complex narration beginning at chapter 2. It ironic that
one of Faulkner's greatest novels is one in which the author only appears as the
teller of the story in one brief section; The details of the hero's arrival,
Thomas Sutpen, i...
... middle of paper ...
...orical knowledge (Connelly 12).
Aswell, Duncan. “The Puzzling Design of Absalom, Absalom!” Muhlenfeld 93-108
Bloom, Harold, ed. Absalom, Absalom! Modern Critical Interpretations. New
York: Chelsea. 1987.
Connelly, Don. “The History and Truth in Absalom, Absalom!” Northwestern
Faulkner, William. Absalom, Absalom! New York: Vintage, 1972
Levins, Lynn. “The Four Narrative Perspectives in Absalom, Absalom!” Austin: U
of Texas, 1971.
Muhlenfeld, Elizabeth, ed. William Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom!: A Critical
Casebook. New York: Garland, 1984.
Rollyson, Carl. “The Re-creation of the Past in Absalom, Absalom!” Mississippi
Quarterly 29 (1976): 361-74
Searle Leroy. “Opening the Door: Truth in Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom!”
Unpublished essay. N.d.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- What Might Have Been in Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom. Emerging from and dwelling within an all-consuming lamentation, the characters of William Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom. enwrap themselves in a world of hurt wherein they cannot or will not release the past. Each comes to know the tragic ends of lingering among an ever-present past while the here and now fades under fretful shadows of days gone by. As the narrative progresses. the major players in this installment of Faulkner's fictional Yoknapatawpha County grow ever more obsessed by what alternative actions different circumstances might have afforded.... [tags: Absalom Absalom Essays]
3335 words (9.5 pages)
- William Faulkner is the author of Absalom, Absalom!, a Southern novel published in 1936. Faulkner dedicates his writing in Absalom, Absalom. to follow the story of ruthless Thomas Sutpen and his life as he struggles against the suspicion and doubt of the small-town folk that were born and raised in Jefferson, Mississippi. Himself a native-born Mississippian, Faulkner entered the world in September of 1897, and left it in July of 1962 at sixty-four years of age. He was the eldest of four brothers, and the son of parents whose prominent families had been destroyed and leveled to poverty with the advent of the Civil War in America during the 1860s.... [tags: Literature]
1643 words (4.7 pages)
- Use of Stream of Consciousness in Faulkner and Salinger How does an author paint a vivid picture of a character’s thoughts. Stream of consciousness, an elaborate, somewhat complicated technique of writing, is a successful method of getting inside of a character’s head. It is not only seeing their actions and environment, it is also understanding their entire thought process through what seems to be a chain reaction. While a character is performing actions and taking in surroundings through senses, thought flows through his or her mind mimicking the mind of a real person.... [tags: William Faulkner, Salinger, Literary Analysis]
1752 words (5 pages)
- William Faulkner's "Absalom, Absalom!" William Faulkner’s novel entitled Absalom, Absalom. is a book which systematically utilizes the concept of discovering the past in the present. Faulkner’s use of the past in the present is pertinent in both the construction of the plot of Absalom, Absalom. as well as the extension of its interpreted meanings. Furthermore, Faulkner’s writing of Absalom, Absalom. appears to have been motivated by the great ills and conflicts of the American South, which was most poignant during the American Civil War, while the title, as well as its implications, was simultaneously conceived in Faulkner’s mind.... [tags: Faulkner Absalom Essays]
1431 words (4.1 pages)
- William Faulkner's "Absalom, Absalom!" When asked by his Canadian roommate, Shreve, to "[t]ell about the South. What's it like there. What do they do there. Why do they live there. Why do they live at all", Quentin Compson chose to tell the story of Colonel Thomas Sutpen (142).The previous summer, Quentin had been summoned by Miss Rosa Coldfield, the sister of Sutpen's wife, to hear the story of how Sutpen destroyed her family and his own. In Miss Rosa's home, he sat "listening, having to listen, to one of the ghosts which had refused to lie still even longer than most had, telling him about old ghost-times"(4).... [tags: William Faulkner Absalom Essays]
1875 words (5.4 pages)
- Faces and Voices in Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom. While reading Absalom, Absalom. I was amazed at the number of times one of the narrators would refer to faces or voices as being present rather than to the people themselves. In almost every chapter this synecdoche appears, reducing many of the characters to images, shadows and memories. I think Faulkner uses this device to enhance the fact that the story is told from memory-- much of it from the point of view of the characters‘ childhoods. On page 184, Mr.... [tags: Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom! Essays]
495 words (1.4 pages)
- How William Faulkner Constructs His Characters in Absalom, Absalom. Who says what - and how and when - may be the most compelling way William Faulkner constructs his characters in Absalom, Absalom. Storytelling is not just an act in which the saga of the Sutpens is recounted, revised, and even recreated; it is a gesture of self-disclosure. Each revelation about the past provides a glimpse into the present state of the narrating character's mind. The rhetoric, the digressions, the strange (and often obsessive) fixations of each character's account are the products of a range of personalities and view points, unable to agree on a definitive version of the story.... [tags: Absalom, Absalom Literature Narratives Essays]
4448 words (12.7 pages)
- The Themes of Faulkner's Absalom. Absalom. The theme of Absalom. Absalom. is the connectedness of humanity and the power of illusion vs. truth. In order to really translate these entities to the reader Faulkner uses the form of stream-of-consciousness. In this style of metaphorical writing one thing can lead you to all things, and vice versa. This is the form of the novel. One can compare this work to a gothic novel, to a Greek tragedy, to an entire metaphor for the situation of the South in itself, but the content is mainly giving us a metaphor for the connectedness of humans.... [tags: Absalom! Absalom! Essays]
1270 words (3.6 pages)
- Faulkner's Condemnation of the South in Absalom, Absalom William Faulkner came from an old, proud, and distinguished Mississippi family, which included a governor, a colonel in the Confederate army, and notable business pioneers. Through his experiences from growing up in the old South, Faulkner has been able to express the values of the South through his characters. William Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom offers a strong condemnation of the mores and morals of the South. Faulkner's strong condemnation of the values of the South emanates from the actual story of the Sutpen family whose history must be seen as connected to the history of the South (Bloom 74). Q... [tags: Absalom Absalom Essays]
1356 words (3.9 pages)
- Four years after the publication of the first edition of Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom!, Wallace Stevens described a modern aesthetic form which necessarily acted against its own status as a (fixed) form1. "What will [temporarily] suffice" in "Modern Poetry" would replace, as the mind's object, what is--or, perhaps more faithfully to the modernist vision, what used to be. The poem of the motion of the mind in time would replace the poem of permanent meaning. The fundamental difference between present and past, the breakdown of static forms, and the necessity of temporal flow all inform Stevens' aesthetic, which works towards a dynamic experience in time, as a substitute for the communicati... [tags: Absalom Absalom Essays]
3066 words (8.8 pages)
- Chaucer's Canterbury Tales - Concept of Charity in the General Prologue
- Essays on Movies (Films) - Stephen Spielberg's Schindler's List
- Ballad of Birmingham
- Confession of the Jews and First Confession
- Comparing Those Rainy Mornings, In The Cutting of A Drink, and The Return
- Nurture and Nature - Influence of Parents on Children's Sexual Orientation