Barn Burning a domestic and social power struggle

Essay by nbeecher64High School, 12th gradeB, November 2014

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Nolan Beecher

Mrs. Dalton

English 4 Honors 1-A

October 5th, 2014

Barn Burning is the 1939 short story written by William Faulkner portraying the tensions and jealousy of lower class citizens towards the first class in early twentieth century Mississippi. Colonel Sartoris (Sarty) Snopes' attitude about his father Abner Snopes continues to grow negatively as his father continues to take part in criminal activities and unjust treatment of innocent people.

The story begins in a small court house with towns folk partaking in the trial of Abner Snopes for burning a wealthy neighbor's barn. Sarty is brought up towards the end of the trial to testify against his father because of his name. (Sarty is named after Colonel Sartoris who was well recognized for his accountability, character, and honesty, and also after the colonl his father fought under in the Civil War) Sarty decides that he can't lie nor tell the truth, so he decides to say absolutely nothing which is the only way he sees fit to defend his father.

Abner is then banished from the community. After leaving the trial, a child of sarty's age accuses his father of "Barn Burning" and Sarty's response was violence in order to defend his father's name. "Again he could not see, whirling; there was a face in a red haze, moonlike, bigger than the full moon, the owner of it half again his size, he leaping in the red haze toward the face, feeling no blow, feeling no shock when his head struck the earth, scrabbling up and leaping again, feeling no blow this time either and tasting no blood, scrabbling up to see the other boy in full flight and himself already leaping into pursuit as his father's hand jerked him back, the harsh, cold voice speaking above...