Arguably the most important writer of the twentieth century, William Faulkner’s novels mark America’s perhaps most sustained contribution to world-class literature. The breadth and depth of his achievement makes him our American Shakespeare, a writer of exquisite beauty, elegance and subtlety. In this course we examine that achievement in five extraordinary novels: As I Lay Dying; Go Down, Moses; The Sound and the Fury; Absalom, Absalom; and Light in August. Throughout the class we will focus on Faulkner’s quasi-philosophical experimentation with unique narrative strategies, the significance of land and property in his conception of America, his comic and tragic treatment of race, and his rendering of the South as a defeated cultural backwater.
Course Number: LIT-40083 Credit: 2 units