Big Woods: The Hunting Stories by William Faulkner

By William Faulkner

"The endure, " "The outdated humans, " "A undergo Hunt, " "Race at Morning"--some of Nobel Prize-winning writer William Faulkner's most famed tales are accumulated during this volume--in which he saw, celebrated, and mourned the delicate otherness that's nature, in addition to the cruelty and humanity of fellows. "Contains a few of Faulkner's most sensible work."

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The trees were massed and matted now with long abandonment; above the jagged mass the stark shape of the house rose squarely like an imperishable and battered landmark above an extinct world. There was no light in it.... (SO 26) He spoke a single word, pointing up the lane with a mittened fist which clutched the whip, toward a single light which shown in the dusk. "Home," he said. . "I said, there is your home. " Still the child didn't answer. He had never seen a home, so there was nothing for him to say about it.

Each system has its hold over him, and each asksnay, demandsthat he martyr himself in its name. Whichever choice he makes, he suffers, in the abstract or in the particular. And choose he eventually must. Sarty's dilemma thus crystallizes and encapsulates the dilemma of nearly all children in Faulknercertainly up to 1938 when "Barn Burning" was writtenwho in their own ways also get caught in the crossfire between contending but mutually reifying structures that demand their obedience. Even so, Sarty differs immensely from those children in the early fiction because for all the intensity with which < previous page page_28 next page > < previous page page_29 next page > Page 29 he wrestles with his dilemma, his choices are based in a developing social consciousness, not in the deep sexual psychoses of so many of his earlier cousins.

Previous page page_20 next page > < previous page page_21 next page > Page 21 "intentions" and outside influences on any given work of art; but that is only an ideal, and most editors will have to choose one version or text to produce; most will have only one comma to wrestle with, and that comma may well be the still point of a turning critical world. The sheer impossibility of the task, then, makes the editorial enterprise an awesome, sobering responsibility. At the same time, and paradoxically, of course, that very impossibility relieves us of some measure of that responsibility, and perhaps ought to give us enough distance from comma placement to consider some of the larger implications of editorial responsibility.

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