William Faulkner is one of the most celebrated authors of the 20th century, known for his powerful and evocative writing style. One of his most acclaimed works is the short story “Barn Burning”, which explores themes of class conflict, social injustice, and morality.
Set in rural Mississippi during the late 19th century, “Barn Burning” tells the story of a young boy named Sarty who witnesses his father engage in acts of violence and destruction. Through Sarty’s struggles and internal conflicts, readers are given an engrossing look into a troubling time period in American history. Whether you’re already a fan of William Faulkner or new to his work, “Barn Burning” is an essential read that will stay with you long after you’ve finished it.
The short story “Barn Burning” by William Faulkner, written as it was during the 1960s, at the end of the 1930s, a decade of social, economic, and cultural upheaval known as the Great Depression, might be read and discussed in our classes today as a narrative about the ’30s.
“Barn Burning,” was first published in Harper’s Magazine in June of 1939 and subsequently won the 0. Henry Memorial Award for the best short story of the year. Students can be reminded of the race, social divide, and economic upheaval of the 1930s by reading this piece as part of a thematic unit on the Depression era or as an aspect of an interdisciplinary course covering all aspects of life during that time period.
William Faulkner’s short story “Barn Burning” is set in the rural South during the 1930s. The protagonist, Abner Snopes, is a poor white tenant farmer who is accused of burning his landlord’s barn. The story focuses on the conflict between Snopes and his father, Colonel Sartoris Snopes, over Abner’s desire to be free from the constraints of poverty and colonel’s insistence that he obey the social hierarchy.
Faulkner uses Barn Burning to explore the themes of class, race, and gender in the American South during the 1930s. He shows how poverty can cause people to turn to crime and violence as a way to escape their situation. He also highlights the tensions between blacks and whites and the subjugation of women during this time period. Through these complex themes, Faulkner paints a vivid picture of life in the rural South during the Great Depression.
Overall, William Faulkner’s short story “Barn Burning” is an important work that offers insights into some of the key issues facing both America and the South during this tumultuous decade. Whether used as part of a classroom unit or on its own, it is a must-read for anyone interested in American history and literature.
The Sartoris and Snopes families were overlapping figures in Faulkner’s imagination during the 1930s. These families, with their contrasting social values, inspired his creativity when he chronicled the passing of a conservative, agrarian South and the emergence of a new era of modernization.
Faulkner’s early stories about the Snopes family, “Mule in the Yard” and “The Hound,” are comic tales, but “Barn Burning” is a tragedy that moves Faulkner away from the comic tradition of the earlier stories.
In this story, Colonel Sartoris Snopes, also known as Sarty, must make a decision that will determine his future. His father, Abner Snopes, has been accused of burning Mr. Harris’ barn. If Sarty tells the truth, his father will be arrested and sent to jail; if he lies, his father will go free. Torn between loyalty to his family and doing what is right, Sarty finally decides to tell the truth. This act of defiance results in his father’s death, but it also gives Sarty a sense of freedom and the chance to start a new life.
“Barn Burning” is a powerful story that explores the theme of loyalty and family relationships. Faulkner’s use of language and symbols creates a richly textured tale that has intrigued readers for generations.
We can begin our classroom lesson on “Barn Burning” by explaining the principles of the Fugitives, their old-fashioned values, and their reverence for the landed gentry way of life. We may focus on the description of the de Spain house and land, with its abundance and privilege, as an illustration of the Agrarians’ vision of “the good life.” Early we should emphasize and talk about young Colonel Sartoris Snopes’s attraction to this lifestyle’s security and comfort, as well as his connection to his namesake’s history.
We will also discuss the boy’s fear and loathing of his father, Abner Snopes, a man who embodies all that is base, dirty, and mean in human nature. William Faulkner’s short story “Barn Burning” is an excellent example of regionalism. Faulkner was a member of the Southern literary renaissance and “Barn Burning” is considered one of his best works. The story focuses on the conflict between the landed gentry and the sharecroppers in the post-Civil War South. Faulkner uses local color to describe the culture and lifestyle of the poor white trash that make up the Snopes family.
In his version of the Sartoris-like agrarian society, Faulkner recognizes its disparity: the injustice, lack of fair play, blacks’ subordination, and community divisiveness caused by empire-builders like the Sartorises and de Spains. It’s this same social inequality that Ab Snopes’ barn burning rails against. We may now take students to the proof of these social wrongs in the tale by finding examples of excellent moments and sequences.
We can ask them to consider the Snopes family’s economic situation in relation to that of their white neighbors. We can have them compare and contrast the living conditions of the blacks with those of the whites. We can discuss the apparent reason for Ab’s barn burnings-his resentment against a society which offers him no opportunity for advancement.
William Faulkner’s short story “Barn Burning” is set in the late 1800s in Mississippi. The story deals with the relationship between a father and son, and how the son must choose between his conscience and his loyalty to his father.
We can begin by looking at the setting of the story. Mississippi in the late 1800s was a time of great social inequality. Blacks were treated as second-class citizens, with little to no opportunity for advancement. Ab Snopes and his family are a perfect example of this. Ab’s resentment towards the white landowners is evident in his barn burning revenge attacks, and it is clear that he feels trapped by the social inequity of that time period.
Other key moments in the story include Sarty’s confrontation with de Spain at the end, which represents the ultimate choice between loyalty to one’s conscience or blind allegiance to one’s family. Overall, William Faulkner’s short story “Barn Burning” paints an insightful picture of life in agrarian society during the late 1800s, highlighting the social injustice and economic inequality that plagued many individuals at that time.
As we analyze William Faulkner’s short story “Barn Burning,” it becomes clear that the central theme of this work is the struggle between conscience and loyalty. The protagonist, Sarty, is forced to choose between his conflicting loyalties to his father and to de Spain, a wealthy landowner who has been targeted by Ab Snopes’ barn burning attacks.
Ultimately, Sarty chooses his conscience and runs away from home rather than continue to follow in the footsteps of his abusive father. Through its depiction of life in agrarian society during the late 1800s, William Faulkner’s short story sheds light on some of the social injustices and economic inequality that plagued many individuals at that time.