Date of Award




Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Department of English

Content Description

1 online resource (vi, 65 pages) : PDF file

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Paul Stasi

Committee Members

Patricia Chu


Absalom, Absalom!, Faulkner, Go Down, Moses, The Sound and the Fury, Time, Characters and characteristics

Subject Categories

American Literature | Arts and Humanities | Modern Literature


The protagonists of three of William Faulkner's major novels, Absalom, Absalom!, The Sound and the Fury, and Go Down, Moses each suffer from a compromised self that originates out of a past that contains excised elements. This revised history, which redacts past sins of rape, murder, and racial mixing, serves as a foundation for the present, passed down to the Faulknerian protagonists, Quentin, Jason, and Isaac, along lines of paternal inheritance. The three novels each suggest that when an idea of the self in the present is founded upon a past that has been rewritten, a shattering occurs when that excised past is rediscovered.