Faulkner's Short Fiction
James Ferguson’s comprehensive overview of William Faulkner’s short fiction is a systematic study of this body of work, which Faulkner produced over a period of forty years. Based on his reading of the manuscripts and typescripts of the stories, Ferguson examines Faulkner’s struggle to master the special problems posed by the genre. While Ferguson offers a variety of new perspectives on the short fiction, he emphasizes solipsism as a key theme.
The book is organized topically. A chronological survey of Faulkner’s career as a writer of short fiction is followed by chapters devoted to aspects of Faulkner’s craft: thematic patterns, point of view, and other technical and formal matters. The concluding chapter deals with the relationship between Faulkner’s stories and his books.
Ferguson offers a frank assessment of Faulkner’s failures and successes as a writer of short fiction along with an exhaustive bibliography of the stories. He urges students and scholars to study Faulkner’s contribution to this genre both as an extraordinary body of work in its own right and as a means of understanding more fully Faulkner’s total achievement.
The Author: James Ferguson holds the Endowed Chair of the James A. and Sophronia R. McKee Professorship in English Literature at Hanover College