Barn Burning Reflection

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I had to read Faulkner’s “Barn Burning” twice to fully experience the work. The first time I read the story, my emotions were centered on how I felt about the actions of the father. I found the father’s calloused, stiff, and emotionless attitude toward his young son and the rest of his family disgusting. The father’s character is shown to be self-serving, as well as a person that is full of rage and violence. Even his most noble of actions, fighting in the war, is shown to be an action to gain him personal profit. He has a love for revenge, whether the revenge is well suited or not. Overall, he gives the impression of a slimly, cold individual. I was repulsed by his character, during my first go around with the story. The second
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The setting is somewhere in the south. The Snopes family seems to be a poor family. Culturally, Faulkner represented the great divide between the upper class and the lower class. The Snopes’ father was a tenant farmer, which at the time was a popular way for the families struggling to rebuild their lives after the war to make money. It was one of the many different strategies used in the south to return it to its previous state. This period in southern United States history is called the Reconstruction Era. Upper class farmers wrote contracts out to poor southerners to replace the hands they lost when the slaves were freed. Faulkner does a great job of showing the struggles of the poor tenant farmers and the bitterness they felt toward the upper class families that they worked for. He brings in other cultural aspects, as well. The dialect that the Snopes family speaks with is representative of the dialect of the lower class during that time. He also brings in the element of education. The Snopes family wasn’t educated, which gave Faulkner another tool to show off their class standing, as well as the differences between the classes. This is a modernist work. It has the long sentences that contain various fragments inside. The way that Faulkner set his short story up follows the set up of the other modernist works of the 1900s. I really enjoyed this piece and I believe that it measures up to the
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