As I Lay Dying English Extension Journal

This is the blog of Jeremy Martin of Year 11 English Extension Class (Phillips. It is being used for the purposes of completing Part B "Journal" of the research project given to Year 11 English Extension Classes. The novel chosen was "As I Lay Dying" by William Faulkner.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Week One

Results of this week's research

Over the course of this week, I have learnt more about "As I Lay Dying" and the work of Faulkner than I initially expected I would. The majority of English time has been spent reading over signifigant areas of the book as the two major critical pieces we are expected to construct on the novel relate to a small number of signfigant scenes.

Reading some of the books in the library, I have come to realise that Addie plays the most signifigant role in the novel. Even beyond the grave, she is the dictator of the characters actions and the main driving force behind the novel. It is her will to be burried in Jeferson which causes the epic journey depicted in the novel.

Further, however I have learnt that the novel isn't only a novel relating to a journey, but rather it is an examination of a family and human behaviours. Faulkner belonged to a group of writers called the "modernists" who were looking to experiment with the form of writing (an example of this is Faulkner's changing of perspective and stream of conciousness approa
ch to "As I Lay Dying" - something which I found annoying and hard to read/get my head around at first. While I'm still not a big fan of the style, it's easier to manage now.) in order to examine new themes. One of these themes which Faulkner dealt with was the clash of the human personality against outside influences/the outside world.

The context of the novel - which was published in 1930 can be viewed as the late 1920s. I believe it was this period which Faulkner (along with his upbringing) drew upon for the novel itself. The crash of th
e stock market in 1929 and flow on affects to the economy, I feel factor into Faulkner's tale - the poverty which the Bundren's live in is a prime example of this.

However, the period it was recieved in (at least initially is the 1930s), however I realise that due to the immense success of the work, the novel has been re-evaluated as the context changes - something evident in
research from books in the library (as a rule, old) and modern internet sources.

Expected outcomes

I believe that my research will continue to reveal facts about the novel and context it was produced in. I feel that I should focus more upon the context it was produced in and slightly less upon the themes examined by the novel - as that is the area we will be ultimately examined upon.

Images related to PART A, series Number One