The Snopes In William Faulkner's The Barn Burning

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Faulkner endeavored to characterize poor whites with writing of the Barn Burning, because there was none in the Southern myth, they show up after the civil war. The Snopes are quintessentially poor white trash as described in Social Relations in Our Southern States, “The Poor White Trash, who is descended from Celtic criminals deported to America. He is bony and lank, with a "sallow complexion, awkward manners, and a natural stupidity or dullness of intellect that almost surpasses belief" (Hundley, 264). They are indistinct in terms of their class identities, from the freedmen colored folk in the new south. He knew that economically and socially he and the former slaves are equal. The only difference that exists between them would be deemed by people like de Spain. Abner tries, unsuccessfully, to establish his class identity to the very society that has alienated him and his family. He feels a grievance for having to sacrifice so much to protect the property of the people that hates them. He feels a…show more content…
and we knew that with nothing left, she would have to cling to that which had robbed her, as people will.”. When the narrator referred to “people”, there was a hint of self-awareness, the town was insinuating that they, too, were guilty of the same thing. The reconstruction of the South after the Civil War, changed the South in many ways. Depending on who you asked, some would say for the better, some for the worse, but however you looked at it, the south was changed forever. Even today, there are some who carry on as if the Old South were still alive and kicking. As William Faulkner said so aptly in Requiem for a Nun, “The past is never dead. It's not even past.” (1951). To most people the past is likely to change often, forever exposed to interpretation that is colored by one’s own
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