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Faulkner and FormalismReturns of the Text$
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Annette Trefzer and Ann J. Abadie

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781617032561

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781617032561.001.0001

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Faulkner’s Figures

Faulkner’s Figures

Speech, Writing, and The Marionettes

(p.41) Faulkner’s Figures
Faulkner and Formalism

Serena Haygood Blount

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter examines William Faulkner’s early experiments with texts and textuality in his play The Marionettes as a training ground for an aesthetic intensely concerned with “meditations on language and literary production.” It analyzes the dynamics of the characters, Pierrot and Shade of Pierrot, Marietta and the Marionettes, as well as the complex and contradictory relationship between these figures. The chapter shows how Faulkner makes visible their emptiness and status as characters in language. It also considers Faulkner’s use of calligraphy and illustration, which turns him into a mime of Aubrey Beardsley, and explains how the returns of the text signify the inscriptions and reinscriptions of character.

Keywords:   textuality, William Faulkner, Marionettes, language, literary production, characters, calligraphy, illustration, Aubrey Beardsley

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