Wednesday, December 10, 2014

I like William Faulkner

I hear a lot of complaining about one of my favorite writers, William Faulkner, and I think 95% of it is undeserved.

I've read all of Faulkner--some books more than 4 times.  Most of the books are straight forward reads.  There are probably 3 that are difficult: Sound and the Fury, Absalom, Absalom, and Light in August.  The others are rewarding but not that difficult.  I taught As I Lay Dying to non-English major Freshman for years.  They may not have liked it, but they could read and understand it.

The more I taught As I Lay Dying, the more I liked it, til there was nothing better in the world than reading that book and smacking my lips over its hard scrabble wisdom, wisdom like “It takes two people to make you, and one people to die. That's how the world is going to end.”

Sure some people will say a quote like that doesn't make any sense, but from what I've known of loneliness and love I can guarantee there's the kind of smartness there that will get you over the river when its flooding, and the snow when it's falling hard and quick as angels in the fields of the lord.

1 comment:

Urkat said...

It was a different time, when writers like Hemingway, Steinbeck and others were seen as men of action and interpreters of the common man. It was anti-eloquence, a swing back from belles-lettres to reportage.

“The young man or woman writing today has forgotten the problems of the human heart in conflict with itself which alone can make good writing because only that is worth writing about, worth the agony and the sweat.” William Faulkner