Use our free chapter-by-chapter summary and analysis of Absalom, Absalom!. It helps middle and high school students understand William Faulkner’s literary. Absalom! Absalom! is William Faulkner’s major work–his most important and ambitious contribution to American literature. In the dramatic texture of this story of. : ¡Absalón, Absalón! / Absalom, Absalom! (Spanish Edition) ( ): William Faulkner, Beatriz Florencia Nelson: Books.

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Maybe you cannot know when you first approach a novel to reread if it will live up to your recollection or sink like dead weight. Maybe, it will haunt you. Second time around though, no stunning surprises to keep the pages turning; the language of racism ansalom to feel gratuitous, painful yeah, yeah, I know, it was reflective of the times and attitudes of Civil War-era South, blah, blah, blah. For a Blue State liberal, some words become tiresome, painful. What was contextually acceptable the first time around, is more oppressive the second time.

Absalom, Absalom!

I found it interesting that Faulkner was a clothes horse, fashionista in his youth—rendering him, perhaps, his own model for Charles Bon, who in turn becomes a model for Fulkner Sutpen.

Apparently, Faulkner was also not a huge fan of people—hovering, talking, wanting something—I can relate. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Absalom, Absalom! Published inAbsalom, Absalom! Although the novel’s complex and fragmented structure poses considerable difficulty to readers, the book’s literary merits place it squarely in the ranks absxlom America’s finest novels.

Absalom, Absalom! Reader’s Guide

The story concerns Thomas Sutpen, a poor man who finds wealth and then marries into a respectabl Published inAbsalom, Absalom! The story concerns Thomas Sutpen, a poor man who finds wealth and then marries into a respectable family. His ambition and extreme need for control bring about his ruin and the ruin of his family.

Sutpen’s story is told by several narrators, allowing the reader to observe variations in the saga as it is recounted by different speakers. This unusual technique spotlights one of the novel’s central questions: To what extent can people know the truth about the past? Paperbackpages. Published January 30th by Vintage first published To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

To ask other readers questions about Absalom, Absalom! Laduke Ely Yes, he is. Pretty sure Faulkner has a few more characters that appear and reappear throughout the Yoknapatawpha novels. This question contains spoilers… view spoiler [Why did Clytie set the house on fire? Like I don’t understand why she would want to?

See all 3 questions about Absalom, Absalom! Lists with This Book. I absapom to think that Faulkner, were he alive, would’ve broken an empty bourbon bottle over the head of JRR Tolkien, and spit some tobacco juice on JK Rowling for their candy-ass prose and their contributions to faulkkner the laziness of readers everywhere.

I further like to think that after he wrote, “. Her voice would not cease, it would just vanish. View all 30 comments. The picture above was used on the first edition dust jacket published in by Random House. The hundred stands for a square miles, the geographic size of the plantation.

The gist of all this is that Thomas Sutpen built himself an empire. These plantations were so large that it required an unbelievable amount The picture above was used on the first edition dust jacket published in by Random House.

These plantations were so large that it required an unbelievable amount of human labor to keep them productive. Mechanical invention had not advanced enough to provide the machines that the plantation owners needed to work such a large tract of land.

When you own more land than you can work and there is not a labor pool available to sustain your industry Well, we know what they did, but what should they have done? Around when cotton became king is when the demand for slaves escalated exponentially. The potato famine in Ireland happened in which brought thousands of displaced Irish to the United States, but this wave of immigration came too late to keep the South from becoming too economically dependent on slavery.


Now I’m not advocating turning the Irish immigrants or the Chinese immigrants who followed into slaves, but wouldn’t it have been a better solution for our history if those plantation owners had adopted the absaoom, but still better than slavery, system of tenant farmers?

Eventually technology would have caught up with the needs of large land owners which would have freed up the tenement farmers for the industrial work that made the North so strong. Maybe the availability of that labor pool would have encouraged manufacturing in the South. Some of the better tenement farmers would have become land owners themselves as plantations fell out of the hands of Southern aristocratic families due to the untimely death abslon a patriarch or because of mismanagement.

Not a perfect world, but a better world and maybe, just maybe we would have avoided a costly Civil War for which the South to this day has abaslon fully recovered. But then would Southern literature be the same? I have a grudging respect for Thomas Sutpen. As a boy he was asked to deliver a message to a wealthy plantation owner in Virginia. He watched the plantation owner lying in a hammock with his shoes off while a slave fanned him. Faulknfr was asked to go to the backdoor to deliver his message.

He will never forget the slight. He lays awake at night thinking about what he can do about it. He does a stint in the West Indies and comes back to the United States, specifically Mississippi, with blacks speaking a strange language. He came here with a horse and two pistols and a name which nobody ever heard before, knew for certain was his own anymore than the horse was his own or even the pistols, seeking some place to hide himself.

Quentin Compson is the thread that sews the plot together. As Rosie Coldfield and his father and a host of other people tell him stories about Yoknapatawpha County his head becomes filled with a convoluted history of his birthplace. His childhood was full of them; his very body was an empty hall echoing with sonorous defeated names; he was a being, an entity, he was a commonwealth.

When he successfully rooked a drunken Indian out of some land they clucked about that, but then as he continued to gain influence and wealth, building a comfortable living out of nothing; they started to worry.

This opportunity had been there for them their whole lives, but it took a man faulknef daring from outside the county to see the potential or have the immorality to make it happen. He took a wife descended from a good family and the community showed their disapproval by not showing up to the wedding. Undaunted, barely noticing that the community had turned against him, Thomas Sutpen forged forward siring a son and a daughter and building the life for himself he had coveted as a boy in Virginia.

The Civil War happens. Almost every able man is called up to serve. Thomas’s son Henry is away from school and has become friends with Charles Bon who because of the encouragement of his mother has, at the advanced age of 28, decided to go back to school. He meets up with Henry absaoln as the plot advances we find out that Charles Bon is Henry’s half brother. Charles becomes engaged to Henry’s sister Judith and of course she is also his half sister.

As you might expect this causes much consternation in the family. I really didn’t think that Charles loved Judith. She was just the blank shape, the empty vessel in which each of them strove to preserve, not the illusion of himself nor his illusion of the other but what each conceived the other to believe him to be-the man and the youth, seducer and seduced who had known one another, seduced and been absaloom, victimised in turn each by the other, conquerer vanquished by his own strength, vanquished conquering by his own weakness.


The book is riddled with incredible passages that would balloon this review up to megalithic proportions if I were to share them all with you.

The layers of the story are frustrating and magnificent. I equate this book to going to a family reunion and spending time with a great aunt, an uncle, and a grandparent and asking them each the fsulkner question.

The story is told with lots of repetitiousness because absalob narrators know a lot of the same information; and yet, from each storyteller is gleaned a few more nuggets because each person who is solicited for the story has a unique perspective and is in possession of different pieces of the life puzzle. I had moments where I wanted to deconstruct this story, strain out all the redundant information and write this story out in a linear fashion, but then it wouldn’t be a masterpiece.

It would just be another book telling a story about a slice of Southern history. By writing this book, this way, Faulkner not only preserved a piece of Southern history, but also preserved the tradition of Southern oral storytelling.

I found that I read this book absaloon late at night after my family was in bed and the only sound that I could hear were the goldfish coming up for air in our fish tank. I would always begin reading intending to only read a chapter, but once I landed in Jefferson, Mississippi I was soon caught up in the intricacies of the writer’s web.

I found myself reading chapter after chapter as if Faulkner’s hand was giving me a gentle push to continue. If you can relax enough you might find yourself sitting on the porch with Quentin and hearing the Southern cadences of the voices of the people narrating this tale.

Property in Absalom, Absalon!: Rousseau’s Legacy in Faulkner | Julia Simon –

Sometimes we all just need to let people tell us a story. Bonus points to those that can actually smell the “wistaria”. If you wish to see more of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit http: View all 52 comments. How abslaom I to put all the pain of this novel into a review?

The pain of the suffering characters? The pain of the reader suffering with them? There were moments when I felt I couldn’t take it anymore, when the carefully built puzzle added another piece to the beautifully decorated and carefully furnished hellscape. What makes you able to talk about that kind of pain, then, I could ask, following the path of Quentin and Shreve, the two dialogue partners who preside over the story in the story, fauliner How am I to put all the pain of this novel into a review?

What makes you able to talk about that kind of pain, then, I could ask, following the path of Quentin and Shreve, the two dialogue partners who preside over the story in the story, trying to carve out truth in the muddle of prejudice, pride, hatred and occasional passion mostly unaccompanied by love?

Agsalom at the fact that a monster like Sutpen can walk the earth, admired as a godlike creature by the people who share his racist and misogynist revenge and entitlement thinking. Anger that he has the power to put children into the world – to CREATE like an evil mirror of the Creator of the Southern religion – whose only purpose is for his “glory and honour” to be perpetuated in a pure, male line.