THAT EVENING SUN BY WILLIAM FAULKNER PDF

We start with twenty-four-year-old Quentin remembering his hometown of Jefferson. He remembers how she was a prostitute for white men. This, as you can imagine, was a traumatizing experience for poor Nancy. She was beaten by one of her customers. She tried to commit suicide in jail and was beaten there too, and ended up drinking and sleeping too much to blot out the memory of her abusive johns.

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Quentin points out the changes that have taken place in Jefferson since he was a child. This change is symptomatic of the other modernizations that have taken place in the American South since the early s. This signifies that black people in the South are still suffering the consequences of slavery, many years after its abolition, in terms of how white people view and treat them. Active Themes Related Quotes with Explanations Quentin describes how Nancy, a black woman who sometimes worked for the Compsons, would wear her sailor hat on top of the bundle of laundry she carried.

While the white children see laundry day as a game, and Nancy as entertaining, it is hard physical labor for the black servants and not something they would be nostalgic for. Jesus never came to help Nancy with the washing, even when she was doing the extra work of cooking for the Compsons because their usual maid, Dilsey, was sick. The fact that he never helps Nancy, even when she is taking on extra work, suggests he is a mean, careless husband. The fact that Mr.

Compson has banished him from the property suggests that he has caused or been in trouble in some way. Download it! They did not cross the ditch however, because Mr. Compson had warned them to stay away from Jesus, who lived with Nancy. By the time she gets around to making breakfast.

Active Themes Related Quotes with Explanations Quentin and his family think that Nancy is a drunk, and that is why she is late for work. Later they hear that Nancy has been arrested again. As she is being escorted to jail, the group passes a man called Mr. Stovall, a local bank cashier and church deacon. Nancy screams at Mr. Stovall responds by kicking Nancy in the face and knocking out several of her teeth. As Nancy is lying on the ground and Mr. Stovall implies that Nancy has been working as a prostitute, and that Mr.

Stovall has used her services but has failed to pay her. Stovall responds violently towards Nancy, kicking her in the mouth, in order to silence her.

He is afraid that her outburst will expose his actions and damage his reputation as a respectable member of the white community. However, there are no consequences for Mr. Stovall, even when he publicly assaults Nancy.

This shows how safe white people were from the law which generally took their side compared to black people. However, the report from the jailor suggests that the white community trivializes this too and thinks that Nancy tries to kill herself because she is on drugs rather than because she is deeply unhappy.

This shows an unwillingness on the part of the white community to address the reasons a black woman may have for being unhappy, such as racism or extreme poverty. White men can tell black men to get off their property, but black people have no civil rights to defend themselves or their own homes from the actions of white men. Compson tells Jesus to stay away from the house. One evening, after supper, Mrs.

Compson remarks that Nancy is taking a long time to wash and dry the dishes and sends Quentin to see what is taking so long. Quentin finds that the dishes have been put away and fire is out. Compson goes to see what is wrong with Nancy. Caddy suggests that she might be waiting for Jesus to come and get her, but Quentin says that Jesus has left town. Caddy tells Jason that he is afraid of the dark too, causing the younger boy to defend his own bravery.

Quentin demonstrates his privilege and his ability to avoid situations that makes him uncomfortable. Although Nancy is a human being, Quentin only views her as something that cooks and cleans and makes the kitchen feel homey.

Jason, however, is already learning that in the patriarchal culture of the South, boys are meant to be brave and not admit their fears. Active Themes Mr. Compson returns and says that he is going to walk Nancy home because Nancy thinks that Jesus has come back to town. Compson asks if Nancy has seen Jesus, but Mr.

Caddy and Jason then beg to go with their father and Nancy and, although Mrs. Compson is irritated, Mr. Compson takes the three children and goes to walk Nancy home. Instead of acknowledging this, Mrs. Compson acts as though she and Nancy are in the same amount of danger from Jesus, even though this is clearly not true—Jesus is unlikely to hurt a white woman because the consequences would be so severe, and Nancy is the person he is angry with.

In contrast, killing Nancy will have no consequences because she is not protected by the law or civil rights. The dark lane becomes symbolic of the racial divide in Jefferson.

This stereotype ignored the fact that black people were genuinely afraid for their lives because of racial violence during this period and, instead, suggested that black people were inherently weak. This supported the patriarchal culture of the South, in which macho bravery was considered a virtue while cowardice was considered unmanly and inferior.

Active Themes While the children argue, Mr. Compson tries to reassure Nancy that Jesus is gone. Nancy tells Mr. Rather than understanding the hopelessness she feels in her vulnerable position as a black woman, Mr. Compson blames Nancy for the situation. Compson shows his racial prejudice because he is more willing to believe that a black woman leads white men astray than that white men freely act in ways which society, in this period, would deem immoral.

Active Themes Related Quotes with Explanations Dilsey is still sick, so the family begin to walk Nancy home every night after she has finished her work. Eventually Mrs.

Compson goes downstairs to check on Nancy as Caddy and Quentin creep out onto the landing to see what is going on.

The fact that they allow Nancy to sleep in the kitchen shows that the Compsons are relatively sympathetic towards their servants, although they do not let Nancy have one of the bedrooms. The sound Nancy makes is associated with the racial divide between black and white characters in the story. The white characters do not understand the sound, and it is portrayed as something alien and strange.

The sound expresses Nancy terror of what may happen to her. The fact that the white characters do not understand this shows what a gulf in sympathy there is between the white and black people in Jefferson. Nancy stops making the sound when the children go down and stand with her until Mr.

Compson comes back. Nancy is most afraid when she is alone and stops making the sound when the children go down to the landing because they provide her with company in the darkness. Although the children are very privileged compared to Nancy, they are in a similar position to her as they cannot physically defend themselves and rely on their father for protection.

Active Themes Quentin and Caddy lie in the dark room with Nancy. Caddy keeps asking Nancy questions about what made her afraid and what she saw in the kitchen, wondering whether she saw Jesus trying to get in.

Nancy becomes associated with the darkness here as the sound she makes seems to come from nowhere and go nowhere; as though it comes out of the dark. Active Themes Related Quotes with Explanations Dilsey gets well and comes to cook for the Compsons again, but Nancy still comes into the kitchen after it gets dark.

Dilsey asks Nancy how she knows that Jesus has come back. I going back to where I came from. This represents racism in Jefferson, which puts all the black characters in danger and is ever present even though it is never openly articulated.

Jason is in the process of learning this racism as he is learning to separate black and white people into different categories. When Nancy replies to Jason, she again associates herself with darkness, nothingness, and lack of salvation, suggesting that her life is meaningless and that nothing can help her. Nancy, like Jason, has learned her place in society because, in the Christian culture of the South, Nancy would be considered sinful because she has been a prostitute.

Active Themes Nancy tries to drink the coffee that Dilsey has made for her, but she cannot swallow it. Jesus will not be afraid to hurt other black people because they are not protected by the law like white people are.

She asks the children if they remember the night she slept in their room and says that, if they let her stay again, she will play with them like she did last time.

She persuades the children to ask their mother, but Mrs. Compson why Nancy is afraid of Jesus and if Mrs. Compson is afraid of Mr. Jason starts to cry and says he will only stop crying if Dilsey makes him a chocolate cake. Compson tells Jason off and sends the children to tell Nancy to go home and lock her door.

Nancy attempts to manipulate the children by reminding them of the time that they played in the bedroom together. Compson, however, has lost patience with Nancy and says no. Caddy picks up on the fact that Nancy is afraid of her husband and is curious about this. Caddy too is learning the social boundaries of the world she is growing up in. As a girl in a patriarchal culture Caddy is probably aware that she will be married one day, and that she will have fewer rights than her husband.

Like Nancy, Caddy may one day be afraid of her husband or be a victim of domestic violence. Active Themes Caddy tells Nancy what Mr. Compson has said and asks what Nancy has done to make Jesus mad.

Nancy says that if the children come home with her, they will have fun again. Nancy grows increasingly desperate after learning that Mr. Compson have given up on helping her.

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That Evening Sun by William Faulkner

Quentin points out the changes that have taken place in Jefferson since he was a child. This change is symptomatic of the other modernizations that have taken place in the American South since the early s. This signifies that black people in the South are still suffering the consequences of slavery, many years after its abolition, in terms of how white people view and treat them. Active Themes Related Quotes with Explanations Quentin describes how Nancy, a black woman who sometimes worked for the Compsons, would wear her sailor hat on top of the bundle of laundry she carried.

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During his childhood, Faulkner was deeply influenced by his mother and grandmother, who were both interested in art and literature. His family were fond of storytelling and Faulkner grew up listening to tales about the history of the south and of his great grandfather, who was a Civil War hero. When he was seventeen Faulkner enrolled at the University of Mississippi and met Philip Stone, who mentored the young writer. Faulkner married Estelle Oldham in and hoped to make a living as a novelist.

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