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Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom!

Dr. Larry Allums

In 1966, literary critic Cleanth Brooks called Absalom, Absalom! the greatest but least understood of Faulkner’s novels. “The property of a great work,” he wrote, “as T.S. Eliot remarked long ago, is to communicate before it is understood; and Absalom, Absalom! passes this test triumphantly.” Recently, novelist Toni Morrison called us back to Faulkner’s ninth novel as bearing invaluable insights into issues of race and class that continue to haunt us today. Faulkner understood these issues, Morrison said, “better than almost any other American writer.” After the fashion of Greek tragedy, Absalom tells the story of the rise and fall of the House of Sutpen in Mississippi before, during, and after the Civil War. We will read and discuss, seeking to understand.

Dr. Allums will being using Vintage International’s edition of Absalom, Absalom! (ISBN: 978-0679732181), but if another version is already owned, that is fine as well. Read Dr. Larry’s syllabus here.

Class audio is password protected and located here.

Four Wednesdays, February 1, 8, 15, 22; 6:30 pm to 8:30.
Members $110, Non-members $125, Member Teachers $35
At the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture (2719 Routh Street, Dallas, 75201)

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