Read Neînfrânţii by William Faulkner Free Online
Book Title: Neînfrânţii|
The author of the book: William Faulkner
Edition: Romanul secolului XX, Editura Univers
Date of issue: 1978
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 3.31 MB
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Reader ratings: 7.3
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Ringo is black and Bayard is white in this novel set during the American Civil War (1861-65). We meet the friends when they are both 12. They are busy recreating the Battle of Vicksburg with a heap of wood chips behind the smokehouse of the Sartoris manse. This is near Jefferson, Mississippi, part of Faulkner’s fictional Yoknapatawpha County.
The boys view each other as friends. Though they know they were born into a system of master and slave, they have absolutely nothing between themselves other than the knowledge that they are equals, if only to each other. Their friendship becomes the lens through which we observe a horrendous war of brothers against brothers, which is fought in the wings.
The boys were nursed at the same breast, have been together all their lives, share the same bedroom, and are one another’s best wartime consiglieres. Colonel Sartoris, Bayard’s father, the ostensible Master, treats them both like sons and considers Ringo the smarter of the two. Ringo is always the talker while Bayard narrates at some unspecified temporal remove. It’s only when they grow older, though they’re still dedicated to each other, that the grow apart emotionally. By this time they’re 24.
Faulkner’s touch—all but one chapter here was published by Saturday Evening Post in the 1930s—is as light as air. It is all but completely without the mannered highflown vocabulary and rambling, dissociative digressions that marked his bourbon-soaked late writing.
General William Tecumseh Sherman has swept through Jefferson on his March to the Sea, and the Satoris manse is burned. Granny, the widower Colonel’s mother-in-law, then begins a scam of requisitioning mules from the Union Army, using forged army letterhead, which she sells back to other Union army regiments for $50 a head. This as a means of keeping locals, both black and white, with food on the table.
Diverting scenes include Drusilla’s forced marriage to Colonel Satoris, since she had spent a year dressed as a man fighting with his regiment and, naturally, must in that period have surrendered many times to his amorous advances—must in fact be pregnant; any deviation from this presumed narrative being for the many prattling ladies of post-Civil War Jefferson not just hard to believe, but inconceivable.
I had always grouped The Unvanquished in my mind with Faulkner’s later novels, which are not my favorites. But this is really a mid-career work. It was written before The Wild Palms and The Hamlet, which in my view is a masterwork. The prose wobbles once or twice in the last chapter—a foreshadowing of future turgidities—but then the ship rights itself, comes smoothly to its conclusion. It’s a light novel, relatively speaking. A rare item in the Faulkner bibliography.
Be advised: Some may be offended by the racist language here. Faulkner is writing of a time when, with Lincoln just elected, the U.S. was all but torn apart by the slavery issue. Most of the time the n-word is used solely as a descriptor, but sometimes in the pejorative sense. (For the facts see David Herbert Donald’s Lincoln and Frederick Douglass: Autobiographies.) Highly recommended.
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Read information about the authorWilliam Cuthbert Faulkner was a Nobel Prize-winning American novelist and short story writer. One of the most influential writers of the twentieth century, his reputation is based mostly on his novels, novellas, and short stories. He was also a published poet and an occasional screenwriter.
The majority of his works are based in his native state of Mississippi. Though his work was published as early as 1919, and largely during the 1920s and 1930s, Faulkner was relatively unknown until receiving the 1949 Nobel Prize in Literature, "for his powerful and artistically unique contribution to the modern American novel." Faulkner has often been cited as one of the most important writers in the history of American literature. Faulkner was influenced by the european modernism, and employed the Stream of consciousness in several of his novels.
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