The Saddest Words by Michael Gorra audiobook

The Saddest Words: William Faulkner's Civil War

By Michael Gorra
Read by Joe Barrett

Highbridge Audio 9781631491702
14.72 Hours 1
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“How do we read William Faulkner in the twenty-first century?” asks Michael Gorra, one of America’s most preeminent literary critics. Should we still read William Faulkner in this new century? What can his works tell us about the legacy of slavery and the Civil War, that central quarrel in our nation's history? These are the provocative questions that Michael Gorra asks in this historic portrait of the novelist and his world. Born in 1897 in Mississippi, Faulkner wrote such iconic novels as Absalom, Absalom! and The Sound and the Fury, creating in Yoknapatawpha County the richest gallery of characters in American fiction, his achievements culminating in the 1949 Nobel Prize in Literature. But given his works' echo of “lost cause” romanticism, his depiction of Black characters and Black speech, and his rendering of race relations in a largely unreconstructed South, Faulkner demands a sobering reevaluation. Interweaving biography, absorbing literary criticism, and rich travelogue, The Saddest Words recontextualizes Faulkner, revealing a civil war within him, while examining the most plangent cultural issues facing American literature today.

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Summary

Summary

New York Times Book Review Staff Pick

A  #1 Amazon bestseller

A New York Times Pick of Best Books Now in Paperback

“How do we read William Faulkner in the twenty-first century?” asks Michael Gorra, one of America’s most preeminent literary critics.

Should we still read William Faulkner in this new century? What can his works tell us about the legacy of slavery and the Civil War, that central quarrel in our nation's history? These are the provocative questions that Michael Gorra asks in this historic portrait of the novelist and his world.

Born in 1897 in Mississippi, Faulkner wrote such iconic novels as Absalom, Absalom! and The Sound and the Fury, creating in Yoknapatawpha County the richest gallery of characters in American fiction, his achievements culminating in the 1949 Nobel Prize in Literature. But given his works' echo of “lost cause” romanticism, his depiction of Black characters and Black speech, and his rendering of race relations in a largely unreconstructed South, Faulkner demands a sobering reevaluation.

Interweaving biography, absorbing literary criticism, and rich travelogue, The Saddest Words recontextualizes Faulkner, revealing a civil war within him, while examining the most plangent cultural issues facing American literature today.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Rich in insight…timely and essential…as we again confront slavery’s stain and who among us should enjoy [citizenship’s] privileges.” New York Times Book Review
“The Saddest Words, [is] an entry point into one of the secret themes of Faulkner’s oeuvre: the Civil War, and the collective madness that underlay the Southern resistance to abolition.” New Republic
“Rich, complex, and eloquent.’” The Atlantic
“Reading Faulkner today we discover just how much imagination and courage can be required to face the past.” Wall Street Journal

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Michael Gorra

Author Bio: Michael Gorra

Michael Gorra, author of Portrait of Novel, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, is the Mary Augusta Jordan Professor of English Language and Literature at Smith College and the editor of the Norton Critical Editions of William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying and The Sound and the Fury.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Biography
Runtime: 14.72
Audience: Adult
Language: English