Religious Perspectives in William Faulkner’s Novels

Xiamei PENG


William Faulkner, one of the most eminent writers in the world and America as well, is not an easy writer to interpret. In reply to interviewers’ questions about his reading, Faulkner frequently cites the Old Testament as one of his favorite books. This is significant because many of his critics have hinted at the biblical, the legalistic, elements in his work. It is in 1950 when he delivered his famous Nobel Prize address that people began to read his novels in a completely new point of view and consider him an optimistic and religious writer. In an attempt to give readers a comprehensive understanding of Faulkner and his fictions, the author puts Faulkner in the southern religious context, thus having a thorough and more profound understanding of his religious feeling and religious commitment. The present essay probes deeply into the religious perspectives of three of his canonical masterpieces, The Sound and the Fury (1929), Light in August (1932), and Absalom, Absalom! (1936), which are examples of the Biblical influence on Faulkner’s literary thought.


The Old Testament; Southern; Religious perspectives Biblical

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