Graduation Year

2005

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.A.

Degree Granting Department

English

Major Professor

Debra Jacobs.

Keywords

Faulkner, Narratology, Postmodernism, Modernism, Rhetorical narratology

Abstract

This paper argues that narrative techniques in Absalom, Absalom! demonstrate Faulkners anticipation of postmodern thought and style. Similar techniques in Christopher Nolans film Memento serve to highlight how both writer and director confound the notion of master narrative by disrupting chronology and raising questions about the reliability of the narrators in each work. Nolan orders all events of the film in reverse while threading chronologically ordered events throughout to tell the story of Lennys murder investigation. Faulkner likewise uses dischronology, such as flashbacks to tell the story of Thomas Sutpen. Both Faulkner and Nolan provide key information through questionable narrators at strategic times to manipulate readers/viewers thoughts and opinions about specific characters. Nolan and Faulkner use several narrators, none of whom witnessed all events, to tell the stories of each work.

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