As I Lay Dying Analysis Essay

As I Lay Dying Analysis Essay-29
With Addie only just buried, Anse forces Dewey Dell to give up her money, which he spends on getting “new teeth,” and then he marries the woman from whom he had borrowed the shovels.

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Faulkner allows us to see a ten-year-olds perspective on life and death from the perspective of a ten-year-old, instead of from the perspective of some all-knowing narrator that doesnt really know what its like to be a ten-year-old.

Also, the actual sequence of narrators is in a cycle.

In “As I Lay Dying” William Faulkner uses multiple points of view to explore the theme of existence as a motionless and meaningless cycle. On the surface the characters appear to change, such as Addie dying, Darl going crazy and Anse getting a new wife, but none of these changes are really as relevant as they seem.

The cycle is motionless because it is inescapable and unchangeable. People perpetuate the cycle by creating life, but in creating life they are creating death, for life irrevocably leads to death. By using multiple points of view Faulkner lets us into each characters mind.

We see how each person thinks about the cycle of existence.

This insight could be accomplished with an omniscient narrator, but Faulkners way is much more effective.

Addie was tired of living, loved only her son, Jewel, and despised her husband, neighbors, and all others around her.

Her only desire was to be buried among her own family members in the town of Jefferson.

Her youngest son drill holes in her casket so her body can breathe, but he drills through to her face. He refuses to admit to any discomfort, but the family eventually puts a makeshift cast of concrete on his leg, which makes his leg worse.

Twice, the family almost loses Addie’s coffin, the first time while crossing a river on a washed-out bridge (where two mules are lost).


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