Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom!: An Innovative Narrative Technique



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 ...

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on what Miss Rosa heard as a
child and her brief personal experiences.
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, into Jefferson in chapter 2.
Although Faulkner sets the scene up in each section (The omniscient
narrator), most of the novel is delivered through a continual flow of talk
via the narrators.
Quentin appears to think the material for the first half of the
chapter 2. The narrator, throughout the novel, works as a historian. The
narrators seem to act like a model for readers. The narrator actually
teaches the reader how to participate in the historical recollection of
Absalom Absalom! The narrator also introduces the reader to things to come.
The complexity of the novel involves more than ...

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demands Henry “must have know what his father
said was true and could not deny it” (91). Compson make assumptions
based on his own conclusions at this time. The words “believe” and “
imagine” again reveal for the reader that he/she must make some of their
own speculations in order to ascertain some of Sutpen's historical facts.
Mr. Compson is creating his own reconstruction of Sutpen's history.
Again, Faulkner uses words like “believes” and “doubtless” to make us
understand Compson's explanation of the past. The reader is now compelled
to believe the narrator. Compson insists at the end of this passage that “
Henry must have been the one who seduced Judith” (99). It appears ...

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Added: 2/12/2006 04:13:21 AM
Category: Book Reports
Type: Free Paper
Words: 2161
Pages: 8

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