"The sound and the fury", by William Faulkner. "The Death of a Family"

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The subject-matter [of Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury] is the death of a family and the corresponding decay of a society. More narrowly, the novel is about the various Compsons--parents and children, brothers and sisters--and how they are able or not able to love each other, and how the failure of love destroys them all. The central focus is the beautiful and doomed Candace Compson. We never see her full-face or hear her speak in her own persona. She lives for us only in the tortured and highly subjective recollection of her three brothers: Benjy, the congenital idiot; Quentin, the moral abstractionist and suicide; Jason, the sociopath who lives only for money ("who to me represented pure evil. He's the most vicious character in my opinion I ever thought of.") These recollections form the first three sections of the novel. They are followed by Section Four, describing the events of Easter Sunday, 1928.

This part belongs mainly to Dilsey, but is told from an outside, third-person point of view, magnificently distanced and controlled. . . .

If the dominant theme of the novel is love--love between members of the family, and how they are able or not able to give that love freely--then the accidents of time and place [of the setting] fade in importance. The evil that the Compson children experience is conventional enough. Much of it is not evil at all, but simply the heartbreak of loss of innocence and the inevitable corruption that comes with growing up. There are evil characters in the book--Jason, certainly. But there are others who are merely weak, irresponsible, and self-serving, like the whining hypochondriac Caroline Compson and her brother Maury. Most of these people, whatever their pretentions, are examples of love defective or love perverted. Only three persons...