Techniques Used in As I Lay Dying Essays

Techniques Used in As I Lay Dying Essays

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It all began when Addie Bundren, wife of Anse Bundren, became ill and passed away. She left one request for when she died, which was to be buried in Jefferson next to her father. Since her family is poor, everything that has to be done is done all by hand by the family. Cash, Addie’s oldest son, has to build the coffin that they will bury Addie in. To try and give her a “last gift,” Cash decides to build the coffin right outside of Addie’s window as she lays in her bed, dying. “As the family moves toward the unfamiliar landscape and community of Jefferson and toward new social identities, they are compelled to respond to pressures and limits that emerge in the context of new settings and social relations” (Lester). While the family takes on the adventure of traveling to their destination, they encounter several problems – from drilling holes into Addie’s face to dropping her coffin in the river. In the end, nothing works out in anyone’s favor, except for Anse Bundren. Anse meets a new woman and decides to make her the new “Mrs. Bundren.” In As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner uses a “stream-of-consciousness,” multiple narrators, and symbolism to better enhance the book and to show the fragmentation of the south after the war.
William Faulkner was born on September 25, 1897 and died on July 6, 1962. By being alive during this time period, Faulkner was able to witness first-hand the fragmentation of the south that followed the Civil War. Having witnessed this, William Faulkner gained insight, which allowed him to successfully write about his experiences. “After World War I…millions of rural Southerners were faced with the struggle of maintaining a way of life that was rapidly becoming extinct or of making the effort to adapt…” (Lest...


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...” Rpt. in Novels for Students. Ed. Diane A. Stanley. Vol. 8. Farmington Hills: Gale, 2000. 37 vols. 15-18. Print.
Bond, Adrienne. “From Addie Bundren to Pearl Tull: The Secularization of the South.” Exploring Novels (2003). Discovering Collection. Web. 7 Feb 2012.
Delville, Michel. “Alienating Language and Darl’s Narrative Consciousness in Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying.” The Southern Literary Journal (1994). Literature Resource Center. Web. 9 Feb 2012.
Faulkner, William. As I Lay Dying. New York: Random House Inc., 1930. Print.
Lester, Cheryl. “As I Lay Dying rural depopulation and social dislocation as a structure of feeling.” The Faulkner Journal (2005). Literature Resource Center. Web. 9 Feb 2012.
Slankard, Tamara. “No such thing as was the fetished corpse, modernism, and As I Lay Dying.” The Faulkner Journal (2009). Literature Resource Center. Web. 13 Feb 2012.

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