Faulkner Against Neo-Confederatism:
The Civil War, Popular Memory and Historiography in the 1930s

In 1936, as Neo-Confederates floated comfortably on a current of popular appreciation for the antebellum South, William Faulkner was dog-paddling violently upstream. America’s positive reassessment of Dixie had just been emphatically reaffirmed by the success of Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind, the penultimate demonstration of the Lost Cause’s triumph (its film adaptation would supply the coup de grâce). Mitchell’s lengthy novel, which quickly sold over one million copies at a pricey three dollars each, was but the latest and most noteworthy to capitalize on what had been a sixty year resurgence in Civil War popularity, sponsored by the tireless revisionism of Neo-Confederate activists.

Released the same year (1936), to somewhat humbler sales, was Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom!, the brilliant if impenetrable antidote to Mitchell’s apologist melodrama. Over the decade, Faulkner’s fiction had become increasingly critical of the Southern perspective, evolving from the ambivalent but biting portraiture of The Sound and the Fury to the forthright indictments of Light In August and this, his most scathing novel. Faulkner traitorously contradicted the propaganda of the United Confederate Veterans (UCV) and the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC), two organizations that had lead the charge to recast history in terms that upheld regional honor and justified the continued subjugation of Southern blacks. The author was pushing back against a historiographical momentum that had been building over the full course of his life. The lies he exposed had been sold to the public in films, mainstream magazines, in the speeches and writings of standing presidents and, as James McPherson has extensively demonstrated, in the textbooks read by public school students (1). Southern pressure groups had managed to salvage from the Civil War a philosophical victory and a national acceptance of racial inequality. Faulkner would use his platform as a writer to contest their false history.

In writing Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell simply reiterated a Civil War narrative she had grown up with, being born, like most of America, long after Reconstruction had ended. Through second and third hand memory, she envisioned an antebellum South of elegant aristocrats and loyal, happy slaves harmoniously coexisting on idyllic plantations. That pleasant, virtuous society was upended by the tragic accident of war and the greater horror of Reconstruction, plagued as it was with rapacious Yankee carpetbaggers, chaotic governments overrun by ignorant black field hands, and the perpetual menace of black sexual violence against vulnerable white women. Against this widely accepted version of events, Faulkner submitted his most intense condemnation of Southern history and a point-by-point rebuttal to Mitchell’s bestseller. Absalom, Absalom! portrayed not purity but miscegenation, not romance but a critical absence of love, and not an ethical society but instead one founded on cold ambition. Thomas Sutpen, Faulkner’s avatar for the South, does not trace his ancestry via a bloodline immemorial; he is a low-bred opportunist with no history who drags self and empire “out of the soundless Nothing...creating the Sutpen’s Hundred, the Be Sutpen’s Hundred like the oldentime Be Light.” Neither is he a lily-white aristocrat but a “demon” and an “ogre.” In a flash, Faulkner reveals the thesis of his allegory in the novel’s earliest pages, when Rosa Coldfield asserts that the nature of Sutpen’s design is “why God let us lose the War, that only through the blood of our men and the tears of our women could he stay this demon and efface his name and lineage from the earth,” that “our cause” was doomed to fail for it was supported by “men with valor and strength but without pity or honor.” She concludes, “Is it any wonder that Heaven saw fit to let us lose?”(2) As Faulkner contends, the war was a “curse” on the South for the immoral foundation of its economy. This “emphasis on the idea that the Southern nation...was defeated from within,” as Malcolm Cowley has put it, represents a fundamental divergence from Neo-Confederate orthodoxy, as well as a rejection of that orthodoxy’s symptomatic denial of failure.(3)

Failure and Faulkner’s affection for it are essential to understanding the author as well as his characterization of the post-war South. At its core, Compson family identity is shaped by Civil War failure, as Faulkner explained in a 1946 appendix to The Sound and the Fury and again in a 1957 interview: “The action as portrayed by Quentin was transmitted to him through his father. There was a basic failure before that. The grandfather had been a failed brigadier twice in the Civil War. It was the--the basic failure Quentin inherited through his father, or beyond his father.”(4) The Sound and the Fury comprised four failed attempts to tell the same story, and as a result, it was the book he felt “tenderest towards.” Faulkner wistfully explained, “I never could tell it right, though I tried hard and would like to try again, though I’d probably fail again.”(5) Plummer notes that Faulkner had difficulty appreciating Ernest Hemingway because he had been a success, whereas respect for Herman Melville came easily because he had turned out a chronic failure.(6)

Faulkner saw the South’s cohabitation with failure as an essential part of the heritage and psychology of his country. In C. Vann Woodward’s diagnosis, unlike the majority of the United States, “history has happened to” the South and this is part of its unique character. The South has “repeatedly met with frustration and failure,” Woodward writes, and has “learned the equally un-American lesson of submission.”(7) Neo-Confederates denied this identity by enshrining several falsehoods: that the Southern slave-based plantation economy was a virtuous system, that the Confederacy won most of the battles in the war (but was eventually exhausted by the North’s ungentlemanly advantages in size and treasure), and that the moral institutions of its culture qualified it to deal independently with its own “Negro Problem.” The dangerous traction of their narrative coincided with a moral awakening in Faulkner, prompting the incendiary discourses of Light In August and Absalom, Absalom! Lost Causers refused to admit, as Faulkner wrote in 1933, that “the South...is dead, killed by the Civil War”; their revisionism amounted to a betrayal of self.(8) But rather than accept death on the battlefield, the Lost Cause fought on for a victory in memory. Their war was a cold one and a long one, but by the 1930s, that victory was in hand.

It began with simple nostalgia, which even then operated in twenty to thirty year intervals. Alice Fahs traces renewed interest in Civil War fiction to the 1880s and highlights a Century Magazine series of articles and anecdotes from 1884-1887 as “an important sign of and catalyst for this burgeoning popular culture of Civil War memory.” The trend soon spread to children’s literature.(9) Faulkner’s great-grandfather, the larger-than-life Colonel William Falkner after whom he was named, profited from of this moonlight-and-magnolias revival. His 1881 steamboat murder mystery The White Rose of Memphis which, though set after the war, is positively steeped in it, sold 160,000 copies over thirty-five print runs.(10) The Civil War renaissance coincided with a massive expansion of the public school system that increased national high school enrollment from 200,000 to two million between 1890-1910, as well as the formation of two major activist organizations, the United Confederate Veterans (UCV) and the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC). Both of these groups made the censorship of history textbooks a priority on their agendas. Pressure from the UCV and UDC led to the creation of state textbook commissions throughout the South to verify that any textbook used in a Southern school would adhere to acceptable “facts,” principal among them that the South fought to preserve “the most sacred rights of self-government” (and not slavery), that secession was a Constitutional right, and that the Confederate army consisted of “chivalric, intelligent, proud, liberty-loving people” who finally succumbed to the North’s ignoble superiority in numbers. Faced with economically crippling regional boycotts if they did otherwise, northern textbook publishers acquiesced to UVC and UDC demands. These publishers nevertheless had to compete with even more partisan textbooks from the South’s new homegrown industry, such as Susan Pendelton Lee’s A School History of the United States (1895), which said of slavery, ‘‘the evils connected with it were less than those of any other system of labor. Hundreds of thousands of African savages had been Christianized under its influence--The kindest relations existed between the slaves and their owners...[The slaves] were better off than any other menial class in the world.’’(11) This language was not exclusively regional; due to Southern Congressional agitation and the economic burden publishers faced in producing differentiated texts, equivalent histories appeared in northern textbooks as well.(12) In 1910, the UCV boasted that textbooks nationwide now told “the true character of the heroic struggle. The influence...of the South forbid[s] longer the perversion of truth and the falsification of history.”(13) Generations of school children had been exposed to these narratives by the time Gone with the Wind and Absalom, Absalom! hit store shelves.

The greater political atmosphere of 1890-1940 was no less ideal for the incubation of a mainstream Neo-Confederate consensus. White America showed signs of outrage fatigue and an eagerness to make peace, accept racial inequality and move on. Civil rights factored very little into post-Reconstruction presidential elections, which were mostly decided on economic issues such as tariffs and the gold standard. Darwinism and its popular pseudoscientific outcroppings (such as eugenics, supported by the likes of Theodore Roosevelt and Margaret Sanger) seemed to lend empirical credence to racial inequality. Plessy v. Ferguson’s affirmation of Jim Crow made only minor waves during its time; the case was decided seven to one with four Republican appointees among the majority vote. Integration was widely considered too radical and inflammatory, making “separate but equal” a moderate solution.(14)

A popular and influential domestic voice during the Southern resurgence was that of Corra May Harris, a genteel Georgian whose regular contributions to the Saturday Evening Post, Harper’s, Good Housekeeping, Ladies Home Journal and the Independent promoted the traditional concept of femininity which Faulkner would deconstruct so mercilessly. Harris’s columns in the Saturday Evening Post ran from 1900-1930, a period when the magazine was likely the nation’s top seller (and during which Harris also published 19 full-length books). Her father was a Confederate veteran, her mother a woman who believed in being “eloquent with the pride of race,” and Harris herself a defender of lynching in one of her first articles for the Independent in 1899. Her Post contributions, Karen Coffing writes, “drew heavily on the related assumption that the South’s social history--its subjugation of the black race, its defeat by the North, and its rural, frontier character--formed a model of womanhood quite distinct from that prevalent in the North. Antebellum southern white women were sexually pure, delicate, virtuous, religious, and devoted mothers.”(15) In one of his earlier steps toward apostasy, Faulkner would demonstrate otherwise.

The Sound and the Fury begins to expose the myth of Southern womanhood through the contrast between Caddy (the “slut”) and Caroline (the “lady”). Caddy is the novel’s most sympathetic and vibrant character and the only member of the Compson family with the agency to escape its congenital morass. Caroline is an insufferable invalid and unfit mother who delegates her maternal responsibilities to her black servant. Though her honor remains superficially intact, she fails at every meaningful level of womanhood and lacks the nurturing instinct which Caddy displays so naturally.

Jason Compson III’s fermented philosophizing on sexuality stitches a thread between The Sound and the Fury and Absalom, Absalom! He comments on the fuss over Caddy’s hymen with cynical, detached enlightenment, declaring that virginity “doesn’t matter”--it is an arbitrary invention--and that “every man is the arbiter of his own virtues.” Quentin, a would-be Harris devotee, cannot bear such a nihilistic devaluation of the sexual act. To deny the neat categorization of virgins, wives and whores offends his internalized Southern code. Jason ascribes Quentin’s obsession with Caddy’s purity to “natural human folly.” He explains: “Women are never virgins. Purity is a negative state and therefore contrary to nature.”(16) Building on this argument in Absalom, Absalom!, he adds that Cora Harris’s cult of purity is not only ideologically bankrupt, it is also fundamentally untenable. Antebellum white female purity depended upon the rape of slaves, Jason (we may as well say Faulkner) explains, the only outlet to which the Southern system directed the white male libido. It was the sexual availability of “slave girls and women upon whom that first caste [virgins] rested and to whom in certain cases it doubtless owed the very fact of its virginity.” Furthermore, in the absence of an international slave trade (prohibited since 1808), and with natural increase the only way to provide the new slaves plantations required, rape became an economic necessity. The “row of faces like a bazaar of flowers” that Henry Sutpen observes at a mulatto whorehouse in New Orleans reveals the “supreme apotheosis of chattelry,” the inevitable corruption produced by the combination of immoral economics and an empty insistence on purity.(17) By design, this system devalues love, as Sutpen’s marriage reveals. He does not seek affection but the commodity of pedigree, “not the anonymous wife and the anonymous children, but the two names, the stainless wife and the unimpeachable father-in-law, on the license, the patent.”(18) Even in his progeny, he does not value love (which Charles Bon offers), but only the legacy of purity and status that a white male heir would provide. These are the side effects of Cora Harris’s value system, which American women brought into their homes every week for thirty years.

Exhausted and increasingly convinced of its own misjudgment, there were signs between 1910-1920 that the North was ready to raise the ideological white flag. In 1912, the nation jointly elected a Southerner president for the first time since 1848. The rapprochement Woodrow Wilson symbolized then continued apace at the next year’s Battle of Gettysburg reunion, which was attended by over 53,000 veterans (one in six of whom were former Confederates) and marked by a mutual “spirit of brotherhood,” as reported by The Pittsburgh Press.(19) Cecilia O’Leary emphasizes the tenor of the gathering as evidence that northern whites were willing to accept Southern propaganda and racial injustice in return for peace.(20)

Adding an exclamation point to the South’s cultural victory was the smashing success of D. W. Griffith’s The Birth of a Nation.(21) Based on the play The Clansman by Thomas Dixon and lionizing Confederate general and Ku Klux Klan co-founder Nathan Bedford Forrest, the 1915 film became by far the most successful movie in early American cinema. Clearly, fifty years had not been time enough to satiate appetites for Yankee devils and Negro rapists. President Wilson, whose History of the American People is quoted in a few of the film’s interstitials (e.g., “The white men were roused by a mere instinct of self-preservation.....until at last there had sprung into existence a great Ku Klux Klan, a veritable empire of the South, to protect the Southern country.”), selected the film as the first ever to screen at the White House. Continued demand prompted re-releases in 1924, 1931 and 1938, propelling the film to box office records that would only be broken by 1939’s Gone with the Wind. Griffith’s epic, which unironically revered Lincoln as the “Great Heart,” managed to raise from the ashes of the war a call for white brotherhood that jibed with Wilson’s address to the Gettysburg reunion. “We have found one another again as brothers and comrades in arms,” he had said, “enemies no longer, generous friends rather, our battles long past, the quarrel forgotten--except that we shall not forget the splendid valor.”(22)

National appreciation for the glory and “splendid valor” of the Civil War proved to possess a Dilsey-esque endurance, strengthened by the stark contrast of its noble warfare to the brutal carnage of World War I. The reenactment that highlighted the 1913 reunion touched off a renewed wave of popularity in the past time, persisting (if unevenly) to as late as 1937, when a U.S. Army reproduction of Antietam drew 100,000 spectators.(23) Over the years, the South’s compulsive remembrance of wartime glory and its idolatry of Confederate military leadership began to undertake the qualities of a religion; the Cause became sacred and its heroes saints. Faulkner knew this affliction quite well. He was similarly burdened by the unapproachable legacy of his very name.

Colonel William Clark Falkner, the author’s great-grandfather, had been a successful soldier, businessman and poet-novelist, and was immortalized post-mortem in a marble statue of his own commissioning. Though often identified as the inspiration for John Sartoris, the details of the elder Falkner’s life are sprinkled throughout his great-grandson’s oeuvre. Like Sutpen, he entered the Civil War a captain and came out a Colonel.(24) Like Gail Hightower’s grandfather in Light In August, he was not only a war hero but an egotist and possible murderer; both wound up shot dead for trivial reasons.(25) Hightower’s relationship with his legendary grandfather provides both a confessorial outlet for Faulkner and an allegorical psychoanalysis of the South. “It was as if he couldn’t get religion and that galloping cavalry and his dead grandfather shot from the galloping horse untangled from each other,” Faulkner writes. Hightower’s identity is developmentally stunted, anchored to a past that exists only in fantasy. He was “born about thirty years after the only day he seemed to have ever lived in,” the town concludes. It was as if “time had stopped there and then for the seed and nothing had happened in time since.”(26)

Toward the end of the novel, Hightower begins to withdraw from his temporal seclusion and enter modernity, attempting too late to interject himself between Joe Christmas and the lynch mob. As he reintegrates with reality, his father’s Civil War smock triggers an epiphany. The Confederate grey is contaminated by a strangely fascinating patch of Union blue, a miscegenation in fabric that reflects the paradox of his father, a figure heretofore ignored in Hightower’s psychology. Like Faulkner himself, Hightower’s father is an abolitionist by conscience but a Mississippian by heritage. He served his country as a preacher and medic as it fought to preserve the system he abhorred. Rather than the glory exemplified by Hightower’s sabre-swinging grandfather, his father’s non-combat role exposes the humanity of the war--something Hightower had subliminally marginalized, for casting the conflict more in those terms would force a difficult reconciliation between Confederate heroics and the shameful inhumanity behind the “quarrel.” The poetic, rambling tone of Light In August’s twentieth chapter departs from the direct, literal style of most of the rest of the novel, a reflection of Faulkner’s personal, tangled connection to Hightower’s dilemma. There is a schizophrenia that Hightower’s father (“two separate and complete people”) shares with the author and again, the South, based in his deep love for a culture founded on an evil design. Though the father’s image lacks the satisfying but mythical purity of the grandfather, it offers enlightenment. Hightower reflects on the merger of Civil War motifs and Christianity that cluttered his sermons and regards himself as “a charlatan preaching worse than heresy, in utter disregard of that whose very stage he preempted, offering instead of the crucified shape of pity and love, a swaggering and unchastened bravo killed with a shotgun in a peaceful henhouse, in a temporary hiatus of his own avocation of killing.”(27) Thus, Faulkner places the Cause in opposition to Christ, and denounces a Confederate warlord as a perpetrator of indefensible violence.

Never one for false modesty, Faulkner boasted that he “created a Nazi before [Hitler] did” with the character of Percy Grimm, Light In August’s “Fascist galahad.”(28) Though the claim is excessive, Grimm does reflect the tribalism that increasingly infected western politics, and certainly America’s, throughout the early twentieth century, a trend that dovetailed nicely with the Neo-Confederate agenda. Besides further ennobling the Civil War, World War I added to the broad and racialized resentment of foreigners already present over job competition. The severe Johnson-Reed Immigration Act of 1924 demonstrates the character of this xenophobia (the law permitted 51,227 Germans to enter the country per year but only 1,100 from the entire continent of Africa). Again, these policies fell within the mainstream, with Johnson-Reed passing the House of Representatives 322-71, the Senate 62-6, and over the complaints of very few Americans.(29) Concurrently, a Birth of a Nation-revived Ku Klux Klan was making significant cultural inroads, reaching a membership of four million the same year Johnson-Reed became law.

The resilient popularity of the Civil War throughout the 1920s and 1930s could be interpreted as a national referendum on civil rights, and Gone with the Wind’s descriptions of blacks during Reconstruction as directed to these voters. Mitchell sought not to stir up hatred (as The Birth of a Nation did) but rather to cement black dependency. Her racism typically takes a paternalist tone, infantilizing blacks rather than vilifying them:

“Aided by the unscrupulous adventurers who operated the Freedmen’s Bureau and
urged on by a fervor of Northern hatred almost religious in its fanaticism, the former
field hands found themselves suddenly elevated to the seats of the mighty. There they
conducted themselves as creatures of small intelligence might naturally be expected
to do. Like monkeys or small children turned loose among treasured objects whose
value is beyond their comprehension, they ran wild--either from perverse pleasure in
destruction or simply because of their ignorance.

To the credit of the negroes, including the least intelligent of them, few were
actuated by malice and those few had usually been “mean niggers” even in slave
days. But they were, as a class, childlike in mentality, easily led and from long habit
accustomed to taking orders.”(30)

Faulkner wrote that the Southern writers of his era tended either to “draw a savage indictment of the contemporary scene or to escape from it into a make-believe region of swords and magnolias and mockingbirds which perhaps never existed anywhere.” It is obvious which route Mitchell took. Faulkner admitted, “I seem to have tried both courses.”(31) To his discredit, he remained suspicious of equality and fearful of integration throughout the 1930s. The troublingly ambivalent conclusions to The Sound and the Fury and Absalom, Absalom! can be read to suggest, respectively, that Negro rule or miscegenation would prove the final downfall of the South. Though it can be tempting to categorize Faulkner as alternatively a racist or a progressive depending on the passage at hand, as Catherine Kodat has argued, “Faulkner’s racial politics...are too confused--too personal, too anguished” for either of these labels to withstand scrutiny.(32) While Faulkner was not yet ready to free the South from its prejudices, he desperately wanted to free it from its ghosts. Quentin Compson, an all-star in Faulkner’s menagerie of Christ figures, dies so this can be so. He, like Hightower, seems to be “born twenty-two years too late.”(33) His Canadian dorm mate Shreve cannot comprehend it:

“What is it? something you live and breathe in like air? a kind of vacuum filled
with wraithlike and indomitable anger and pride and glory at and in happenings
that occurred and ceased fifty years ago? a kind of entailed birthright father and
son and father and son of never forgiving General Sherman, so that forever more
as long as your children’s children produce children you wont be anything but a
descendant of a long line of colonels killed in Pickett’s charge at Manassas?”(34)

Faulkner, having recently exorcised the “Old Colonel,” though still haunted by the rest, observes Quentin with a tender, sympathetic eye. The poor boy’s “very body was an empty hall echoing with sonorous defeated names; he was not a being, an entity, he was a commonwealth.” While Quentin struggles on, possessed by “back-looking ghosts” and committed to a thing which deeper contemplation exposes as unbearable, Faulkner clarifies the choice before a nation that has fallen hard for Rhett and Scarlet: either cultural growth or more rose-tinted nonsense.(35) Faulkner rewrote the South’s rewritten history to cure what Warren Beck recognized in 1941 as “habitual nostalgia,” an “addiction to this dream,” and the “stultification of Southern psychology.”(36) Faulkner demonstrated that the South’s legend was not its strength but its burden, that the war it fought to protect that legend was not a source of glory but a source of shame, and that its loss reflected not a persecution from without but rather a failure from within. His rewrite was a history ahead of its time.

–Casey Levinson

Notes

1 James McPherson, “Long-Legged Yankee Lies: The Lost Cause Textbook Crusade,” The Memory of the Civil War in American Culture, ed. Alice Fahs and Joan Waugh, Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press (2004), pp. 64-78.
2 Absalom, Absalom!, Vintage International Edition (1990), pp. 4, 6, 13.
3 Malcolm Cowley, “William Faulkner’s Legend of the South,” The Sewanee Review, Vol. 53, No. 3 (Summer, 1945), p. 351.
4 Interview at the University of Virginia, Feb 15, 1957. Reprinted in: The Sound and the Fury, Norton Critical Edition (1994), p. 235.
5 Interview with Jean Stein vanden Heuvel, 1956. Reprinted in: The Sound and the Fury, Norton Critical Edition, p. 233.
6 William Plummer, “Three Versions of Faulkner,” The Hudson Review, Vol. 31, No. 3 (Autumn, 1978). p. 471.
7 C. Vann Woodward, “The Irony of Southern History,” The Burden of Southern History (1960). Reprinted in: The Sound and the Fury, Norton Critical Edition, pp. 242-243.
8 “An Introduction to The Sound and the Fury,” Mississippi Quarterly 26 (Summer 1973). Reprinted in: The Sound and the Fury, Norton Critical Edition, p. 229.
9 Alice Fahs, “Remembering the Civil War in Children’s Literature of the 1880s and 1890s,” The Memory of the Civil War in American Culture, p. 90.
10 Joel Williamson, William Faulkner and Southern History, Oxford University Press (1993), p. 55.
11 McPherson, pp. 68-70.
12 Such as one in use in Philadelphia that stated, “The laziness, shiftlessness, and irresponsibility of the Negro [are] part of his racial identity.” See: Jonathan Zimmerman, “’Each ‘Race’ Could Have Its Heroes Sung’: Ethnicity and the History Wars in the 1920s,” The Journal of American History (June 2000), p. 103.
13 McPherson, p. 70.
14 Charles M. Payne, “’The Whole United States Is Southern!’: Brown v. Board and the Mystification of Race,” The Journal of American History (June 2004), p. 86.
15 Karen Coffing, “Corra Harris and the Saturday Evening Post: Southern Domesticity Conveyed to a National Audience, 1900-1930,” The Georgia Historical Quarterly, Vol. 79, No. 2 (Summer 1995), pp. 367-393.
16 The Sound and the Fury, Vintage International Edition (1990), pp. 50, 73-74, 112.
17 AA, p. 87, 89.
18 AA, p. 39.
19 “Pathetic Night Scene In Veterans’ Grand Reunion,” The Pittsburgh Press, July 1, 1913, page 3. Retrievable through Google News Archive.
20 Tom Dunning, “Civil War Reenactments: Performance As a Cultural Practice,” Australasian Journal of American Studies, Vol. 21, No. 1 (July 2002), p. 63.
21 For more, see: David Brion Davis, “Free at Last: The Enduring Legacy of the South’s Civil War Victory,” New York Times, Aug. 26, 2001, sec. 4, pg. 1.
22 Address at Gettysburg, July 4, 1913. Retrievable via The American Presidency Project. Compare Wilson’s words to this statement by Captain Quitman in Col. Falkner’s The White Rose of Memphis: “Let the past bury the past--let us cultivate a feeling of friendship between the North and South. Both parties committed errors...Let us teach forgiveness and patriotism, and look forward to the time when the cruel war shall be forgotten...It was a family quarrel, and the family has settled it.” --M.A. Donahue and Co: New York (1912), p. 30.
23 Dunning, p. 65.
24 To be precise, Sutpen went from Major to Colonel--still an achievement.
25 Williamson, pp. 41-76.
26 Light In August, Vintage International Edition (1990), pp. 62, 64.
27 LIA, pp. 473, 488.
28 Letter to Malcolm Cowley, Sept, 1945. Quoted in: Hugh Ruppersburg, Reading Faulkner: Light In August, University Press of Mississippi (1994), p. 256.
29 “Immigration Bill Passes Senate by Vote of 62 to 6,” New York Times, April 19, 1924. Retrievable online.
30 Margaret Mitchell, Gone with the Wind, Simon and Schuster: New York (2008), Chapter 37.
31 Williamson, p. 244.
32 Catherine Gunther Kodat, “Faulkner and ‘Faulkner’,” American Literary History, Vol. 15, No. 1 (Spring, 2003), p. 194.
33 AA, p. 15.
34 AA, p. 289.
35 AA, p. 7.
36 Warren Beck, “Faulkner and the South,” The Antioch Review, Vol. 1, No. 1 (Spring, 1941), p. 85.