We also discover that Harris' barn is not the first barn that he has burned.
Snopes never burns farm houses, and while we might initially conclude that this restraint is proof that Snopes isn't wholly incorrigible, we soon learn that on farms, barns are more important than houses because they hold livestock and oftentimes harvested crops, which provide the money and food that farmers and their families need to survive. ." Sarty cannot complete his thought that his father is not only a barn burner, but that he has been one for so long that before he burns down one barn, he has "already arranged to make a crop on another farm before he . ." Again, Sarty severs his thought before he comes to the logical conclusion. burnt down the barn." Following the courtroom scene, Snopes loads his family into a wagon, headed for another farm on which to work.
His motivations for deliberately soiling and then ruining the rug are essentially related to his wounded foot and his wounded pride.
He resents being treated worse than most blacks would be treated, and he is angered by de Spain's contempt for him.
de Spain orders Snopes out of the house after he deliberately tracks dung on her rug, he pivots intentionally so that his boot makes a "final long and fading smear." Leaving, he wipes the rest of the manure from his boot on the front steps before looking back at the mansion and commenting: "Pretty and white, ain't it? It is, however, significant that the smearing is done with Snopes' wounded foot, which suggests his evil character.
Barn Burning By William Faulkner Point Of View Critical Thinking Courses Online
We know that he was wounded in the Civil War, and because he had no allegiance to either side, he is resentful of his current place in life — a resentment that causes him to strike out blindly at any and all forces that oppose him, or that he perceives as a threat.Snopes feels superior only when he encounters someone who is black — in this case, the butler.Except in the South, nowhere in the United States could such a white-trash character like Abner Snopes enter the front door of a mansion if the butler forbade entry.Consequently, Snopes can feel superior to the black butler only because his own skin is white.Two hours later, Sarty sees de Spain ride up to his father.Explaining that an older Sarty might also wonder why, he provides two possible reasons: Because Abner was always hiding from troops during the Civil War, he grew accustomed to building small fires, which would not expose his location; but Faulkner settles on a better explanation, that fire "spoke to some deep mainspring" of Abner's character "as the one weapon for the preservation of integrity . When the family arrives at the new sharecropping farm, Snopes takes Sarty along with him to see Major de Spain, "the man that aims to begin to-morrow owning me body and soul for the next eight months." Arriving at the landowner's mansion, Sarty is astonished by its size. They are safe from him." Sarty thinks that the mere magnificence of the mansion will stop his father from burning more barns.Faulkner emphasizes his theme of justice by having Sarty compare the de Spain mansion to a place of law: "Hit's big as a courthouse . This belief, no matter how false it might be, creates "a surge of peace and joy" within the young boy, who has known only a life of "frantic grief and despair." He hopes that his father will be as affected by the house's grandeur as he is, and that the stateliness of de Spain's plantation will "even change him now from what maybe he couldn't help but be." Sarty's dream is admirable and demonstrates his youthful innocence, but we know that he will be sorely disappointed. Maybe he wants to mix some white sweat with it." This encounter, featuring Snopes and his defilement of the de Spain mansion, is the central motivation for the story.Young Sarty has a choice: He can be loyal to his father, his blood relative, or he can do what he innately senses is right.He knows that his father is wrong when he burns barns, but Abner constantly reminds his son of the importance of family blood, and of the responsibilities that being part of a family entails.Along with Sarty, we do not know what trespasses between the two men, but it is soon apparent that de Spain has brought the rug for Snopes to clean.Later, not satisfied with the way his two "bovine" daughters do the job, Snopes picks up a field stone and begins to vigorously scrub — and ruin — the rug himself.