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Snopes: The Hamlet, The Town, The Mansion
William Faulkner
The Sound and the Fury: The Corrected Text
William FaulknerThe Sound and the Fury is the tragedy of the Compson family, featuring some of the most memorable characters in literature: beautiful, rebellious Caddy; the manchild Benjy; haunted, neurotic Quentin; Jason, the brutal cynic; and Dilsey, their black servant. Their lives fragmented and harrowed by history and legacy, the character’s voices and actions mesh to create what is arguably Faulkner’s masterpiece and  one of the greatest novels of the twentieth century.

“I give you the mausoleum of all hope and desire. . . . I give it to you not that you may remember time, but that you might forget it now and then for a moment and not spend all of your breath trying to conquer it. Because no battle is ever won he said. They are not even fought. The field only reveals to man his own folly and despair, and victory is an illusion of philosophers and fools.” —from The Sound and the Fury
A Summer of Faulkner: As I Lay Dying/The Sound and the Fury/Light in August
William FaulknerThe 2005 Summer Selection is available in an exclusive three volume boxed edition that includes a special reader’s guide with an introduction by Oprah Winfrey.

Titles include:
As I Lay Dying
This novel is the harrowing account of the Bundren family’s odyssey across the Mississippi countryside to bury Addie, their wife and mother. Told in turns by each of the family members–including Addie herself–the novel ranges in mood from dark comedy to the deepest pathos. Originally published in 1930.

The Sound and the Fury
First published in 1929, Faulkner created his “heart’s darling,” the beautiful and tragic Caddy Compson, whose story Faulkner told through separate monologues by her three brothers–the idiot Benjy, the neurotic suicidal Quentin and the monstrous Jason.

Light in August
Light in August, a novel about hopeful perseverance in the face of mortality, features some of Faulkner’s most memorable characters: guileless, dauntless Lena Grove, in search of the father of her unborn child; Reverend Gail Hightower, who is plagued by visions of Confederate horsemen; and Joe Christmas, a desperate, mysterious drifter consumed by his mixed ancestry. Originally published in 1932.

Take a seat in Oprah’s Classroom and sign up for Faulkner 101 on www.oprah.com/bookclub.
William Faulkner : Novels 1930-1935 : As I Lay Dying, Sanctuary, Light in August, Pylon
William Faulkner, Joseph Blotner, Noel PolkBetween 1930 and 1935, William Faulkner came into full possession of the genius and creativity that made him America's greatest writer of the twentieth century. "As I Lay Dying" is a dark comedy, full of horror and compassion, of a rural Mississippi family bearing the corpse of their matriarch to burial in town. "Sanctuary," a violent novel of sex and social class that moves from Mississippi back roads to the flesh-pots of Memphis, features a sadistic gangster named Popeye and a debutante with an affinity for evil. "Light in August," a near-religious vision of the hopeful stubbornness of ordinary life, is perhaps Faulkner's most moving work. "Pylon," a tale of barnstorming aviators, examines the bonds of loyalty and desire among three men and a woman. All are presented in restored texts as part of The Library of America's new, authoritative edition of Faulker's complete works.
William Faulkner : Novels 1936-1940 : Absalom, Absalom! / The Unvanquished / If I Forget Thee, Jerusalem / The Hamlet
William Faulkner, Joseph Blotner, Noel PolkThese four novels show one of America's greatest writers at the height of his powers. Presented in authoritative new texts, they explore the struggles of characters in a South caught between a romantic and a tragic past and the corrupting enticements of the present. Quentin Compson and his Harvard roomate re-create the story of the insanely ambitious patriarch Thomas Sutpen—and discover that his grief, pride, and doom are the inescapable legacy of a past that is not dead. "The Unvanquished" recounts the ordeals and triumphs of the Sartoris family during and after the Civil War. In "If I Forget Thee, Jerusalem" (first published as "The Wild Palms"), paired stories tell of desperate lovers and a fleeing convict. In "The Hamlet," the outrageous scheming energy of Flem Snopes and his clan is vividly and hilariously juxtaposed with the fragile community and customs of Frenchman's bend, Mississippi.
William Faulkner : Novels 1942-1954 : Go Down, Moses / Intruder in the Dust / Requiem for a Nun / A Fable
William Faulkner, Joseph Blotner, Noel PolkThe years 1942 to 1954 saw Faulkner's greatest success—and greatest inner anguish. Plagued by depression and alcohol, he knew he had more to achieve and a finite amount of time and energy to achieve it. This volume gathers four groundbreaking works from this fascinating period. "Go Down, Moses" is a haunting novel that explores the intertwined lives of black, white, and Indian inhabitants of Yoknapatawpha County. It includes "The Bear," one of the most famous works in American fiction. "Intruder in the Dust," a detective novel, is a compassionate story of a black man on trial and the growing moral awareness of a southern white boy. "Requiem for a Nun" tells the fate of a passionate, haunted Temple Drake and her tortured redemption. "A Fable," Faulkner's recasting of the Christ story set in World War I, earned him the Pulitzer Prize.
William Faulkner: Novels 1926-1929: Soldiers' Pay / Mosquitoes / Flags in the Dust / The Sound and the Fury
William Faulkner, Noel Polk, Joseph BlotnerThe Library of America edition of the novels of William Faulkner culminates with this volume presenting his first four, each newly edited, and, in many cases, restored with passages that were altered or (in the case of Mosquitoes) expurgated by the original publishers. This is Faulkner as he was meant to be read.

In these four novels we can track Faulkner's extraordinary evolution as, over the course of a few years, he discovers and masters the mode and matter of his greatest works. Soldiers' Pay (1926) expresses the disillusionment provoked by World War I through its account of the postwar experiences of homecoming soldiers, including a severely wounded R.A.F. pilot, in a style of restless experimentation. In Mosquitoes (1927), a raucous satire of artistic poseurs, many of them modeled after acquaintances of Faulkner in New Orleans, he continues to try out a range of stylistic approaches as he chronicles an ill-fated cruise on Lake Pontchartrain.

With the sprawling Flags in the Dust (published in truncated form in 1929 as Sartoris), Faulkner began his exploration of the mythical region of Mississippi that was to provide the setting for most of his subsequent fiction. Drawing on family history from the Civil War and after, and establishing many characters who recur in his later books, Flags in the Dust marks the crucial turning point in Faulkner's evolution as a novelist.

The volume concludes with Faulkner's masterpiece, The Sound and the Fury (1929). This multilayered telling of the decline of the Compson clan over three generations, with its complex mix of narrative voices and its poignant sense of isolation and suffering within a family, is one of the most stunningly original American novels.

The editors of this volume are Joseph Blotner and Noel Polk. Joseph Blotner, who wrote the notes, is professor of English emeritus at the University of Michigan. Biographer of William Faulkner and Robert Penn Warren, he is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers and the French Legion of Honor. Noel Polk is professor of English at Mississippi State University and editor of The Mississippi Quarterly. He has edited the texts in all five volumes of William Faulkner's novels for The Library of America.

In his first four novels, William Faulkner moved beyond early experiments to discover the themes and style of his maturity. With Soldiers' Pay, a sardonic distillation of postwar disillusionment, and Mosquitoes, a freewheeling roman à clef satirizing the writers and artists of his New Orleans milieu, Faulkner served his restless apprenticeship as a writer of fiction before settling in Flags in the Dust (first published in truncated form as Sartoris) on the material that would chiefly engage him: a mythic Mississippi region dense with ancestral memories and echoes of the Civil War. The volume concludes with what many consider Faulkner's greatest work, The Sound and the Fury, a novel of family torment whose audacities of form and fearless explorations of the inner life continue to astonish. The newly edited texts in this volume include passages altered or in some cases expurgated by the original publishers.
William Faulkner: Novels, 1957-1962: The Town / The Mansion / The Reivers
William Faulkner, Noel PolkWilliam Faulkner's fictional chronicle of Yoknapatawpha County culminates in his three last novels, rich with the history and lore of the domain where he set most of his novels and stories. "The Town" (1957), the second novel of the Snopes trilogy that began with "The Hamlet," charts the rise of the rapacious Flem Snopes and his extravagantly extended family as they connive their way into power. In "The Mansion" (1959), the trilogy's conclusion, a wronged relative finally destroys Flem and his dynasty. Faulkner's last novel, "The Reivers: A Reminiscence" (1962), distinctly mellower and more elegiac than his earlier work, is a picaresque adventure that evokes the world of childhood with a final burst of comic energy. "Novels 1957-1962," like previous volumes in The Library of America's edition of the complete novels of William Faulkner, has been newly edited by textual scholar Noel Polk to establish an authoritative text, that features a chronology and notes by Fau! lkner's biographer Joseph Blotner.
The Sound and the Fury
WILLIAM FAULKNER