William Faulkner

William Faulkner
较难 3298


William Faulkner


William Faulkner (September 25, 1897 – July 6, 1962) was a Noble Prize-Winning American author. One of the most influential writers of the 20th century, his reputation is based on his novels, novellas and short stories. He was also a published poet and an occasional screenwriter.


Most of Faulkner's works are set in his native state of Mississippi. He is considered one of the most important southern writers along with mark twain, Robert Penn Warren, Flannery O'Connor, Truman Capote, Eudora Welty, and Tennessee Williams. While his work was published regularly starting in the mid 1920s, Faulkner was relatively unknown before receiving the 1949 Nobel Prize in literature. Since then, he has often been cited as one of the most important writers in the history of American literature.




From the early 1920s to the outbreak of WWII, when Faulkner left for California, he published 13 novels and numerous short stories, the body of work that grounds his reputation and for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize at the age of 52. this prodigious output, mainly driven by an obscure writer's need for money, includes his most celebrated novels such as the Sound and the Fury (1929), As I Lay Dying (1930), Light in August (1932), and Absalom, Absalom! (1936). Faulkner was also a prolific writer of short stories. His first short story collection, These 13 (1931), includes many of his most acclaimed (and most frequently anthologized) stories, includes "A Rose for Emily", "Red Leaves", "That Evening Sun", and "Dry September". Faulkner set many of his short stories and novels in Yoknapatawpha County—based on, and nearly geographically identical to, Lafayette County, of which his hometown of Oxford, Mississippi is the county seat. Yoknapatawpha was Faulkner's "postage stamp", and the bulk of work that it represents is widely considered by critics to amount to one of the most monumental fictional creations in the history of literature three novels, the hamlet, the town and the mansion, known collectively as the Snopes Trilogy, document the town of Jefferson and its environs as an extended family headed by Flem Snopes insinuates itself into the lives and psyches of the general populace. It is a stage wherein rapaciousness and decay come to the fore in a world where such realities were always present, but never so compartmentalized and well defined; their sources never so easily identifiable.


Characterized by André Malraux as "the intrusion of Greek tragedy into the detective story." its themes of evil and corruption, bearing southern gothic tones, resonate to this day. Requiem for a nun (1951), a play/novel sequel to sanctuary, is the only play that Faulkner published, except for his the marionettes, which he essentially self-published -- in a few hand-written copies -- as a young man.


Faulkner is known for an experimental style with meticulous attention to diction and cadence. In contrast to the minimalist understatement of his contemporary Ernest Hemingway, Faulkner made frequent use of "stream of consciousness" in his writing, and wrote often highly emotional, subtle, cerebral, complex, and sometimes gothic or grotesque stories of a wide variety of characters including former slaves or descendants of slaves, poor white, agrarian, or working-class southerners, and southern aristocrats. In an interview with the Paris review in 1956, Faulkner remarked, "let the writer take up surgery or bricklaying if he is interested in technique. There is no mechanical way to get the writing done, no shortcut. The young writer would be a fool to follow a theory. Teach yourself by your own mistakes; people learn only by error. The good artist believes that nobody is good enough to give him advice. He has supreme vanity. no matter how much he admires the old writer, he wants to beat him." another esteemed southern writer, Flanner O'Connor, stated that, "the presence alone of Faulkner in our midst makes a great difference in what the writer can and cannot permit himself to do. nobody wants his mule and wagon stalled on the same track the Dixie limited is roaring down."


Faulkner also wrote two volumes of poetry which were published in small printings, The Marble Faun (1924) and A Green Bough (1933), and a collection of crime-fiction short stories, Knight's Gambit (1949).




In 1946, Faulkner was one of three finalists for the first Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine Award. He came in second to Manly Wade Wellman. Faulkner received the 1949 Nobel Prize for literature for "his powerful and artistically unique contribution to the modern American novel." though he won the Nobel Prize for 1949, it was not awarded until the 1950 awards banquet, when Faulkner was awarded the 1949 prize and Bertrand Russell the 1950 prize. He donated a portion of his Nobel winnings "to establish a fund to support and encourage new fiction writers," eventually resulting in the Pen/Faulkner award for fiction. He donated another portion to a local oxford bank to establish an account to provide scholarship funds to help educate African-American education majors at nearby rust college in holly springs, Mississippi. Faulkner won two Pulitzer Prizes for what are considered as his "minor" novels: his 1954 novel A Fable, which took the Pulitzer in 1955, and the 1962 novel, The Reivers, which was posthumously awarded the Pulitzer in 1963. He also won two National Book awards, first for his collected stories in 1951 and once again for his novel A Fable in 1955. On August 3, 1987, the United States postal service issued a 22-cent postage stamp in his honor.

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  • 来源: 2016-08-05