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Faulkner and Material Culture$
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Joseph R. Urgo and Ann J. Abadie

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781617037122

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781617037122.001.0001

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date: 15 November 2018

The Philosophy of Furniture, or Light in August and the Material Unconscious

The Philosophy of Furniture, or Light in August and the Material Unconscious

Chapter:
(p.20) The Philosophy of Furniture, or Light in August and the Material Unconscious
Source:
Faulkner and Material Culture
Author(s):

Jay Watson

Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781617037122.003.0002

This chapter explores the links between material culture and the economies of wood in Light in August, a novel noted in the Faulkner oeuvre for its dense, realistic presentations of the north Mississippi landscape and object world. The objective here is to show that Light in August is extraordinarily overinvested in a material economy that involves the production and distribution of timber, lumber, and other wood products and in a signifying economy wherein references to wood and wooden objects are constantly working their way into the language and imagery of the text, often in quite conspicuous ways but just as often in subtle ones. From this aspect of the novel, according to critic Bill Brown, one can see the workings of the material unconscious.

Keywords:   material culture, economies of wood, the material unconscious, material economy, signifying economy, Bill Brown

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