Books and Movies Reviews

William Faulkner

William Faulkner wrote many stories depicting society during the early twentieth century.In his stories "Barn Burning" and "A Rose for Emily," Faulkner discusses how rich whites mistreat the tenant farmers who in turn abuse the blacks, tells about Colonel Sartoris Snopes's dilemma when his father wants him to lie, and explains how Emily was mistreated by men.Through his works, Faulkner discusses society of the pre-Depression era by explaining the class distinction, adulteration of morals, and subordination of women in order to show the corruption of the American dream.
In "Barn Burning," Faulkner places an emphasis on the separation of social classes.Abner Scopes, a white tenant farmer, takes on a air of superiority when talking to a black servant.However, Scopes neglects the fact that he is poor compared to the servant.He degrades the servant, telling him, "Get out of my way, nigger" (Faulkner 1625).His command to the servant depicts how the tenants viewed themselves as better than the blacks.When he enters the house, Scopes further insults the servant by explaining the difference between blacks and whites when he says, "That's sweat.Nigger sweat.Maybe it ain't white enough yet to suit him.Maybe he wants to mix some white sweat with it" (1626).Through this quotation, Faulkner is explaining Scopes's view that blacks and whites are not equal.Moreover, the issue of landowners feeling superior to tenant farmers is also mentioned in "Barn Burning."Major de Spain, the owner of the house, shows his haughtiness over Scopes by boasting about his wealth.After Scopes ruins de Spain's rug, the Major states, "You must realize you have ruined that rug. . . It costs a hundred dollars.But you never had a hundred dollars.You never will" (1627).Faulkner includes these passages to show that tenant whites feel that they are …

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