Traces of the Dark Sublime in William Faulkner's "The Bear," Light in August, and Absalom, Absalom!
Master of Arts (MA)
First Advisor's Name
First Advisor's Committee Title
Second Advisor's Name
Third Advisor's Name
Michael P. Gillespie
William Faulkner, the sublime
Date of Defense
The purpose of this thesis is to explore William Faulkner’s paradoxical modernist aesthetic. While his writings evince primal, earthy, and post-Civil War angst-ridden qualities, Faulkner’s narratives are also found to be hyper-postmodern. Using Jacques Derrida’s theories on the absent-present trace, I will show how certain micromoments in three of Faulkner’s texts showcase the “trace” forming a pathway to the inaccessible and unattainable sublime. I will use “trace” and general theories of the “sublime” as methodological tools to explore Faulkner’s narrative of pastoral loss, the cultural institutionalization of racial differences, as well as structures of mourning/melancholia that lead to the disruption of the pathway between trace and sublime. The imagery/narrative palpability, manifested through Faulkner’s pictorial imagination, brings Derridean theory to earth, yet meanwhile transcends any theoretical or conceptual methodology. The three micromoments will reveal ruptures (irreconcilable meanings) at work in the margins of these texts.
Delgadillo, Manuel, "Traces of the Dark Sublime in William Faulkner's "The Bear," Light in August, and Absalom, Absalom!" (2013). FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 990.
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