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Three Famous Short Novels por William…
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Three Famous Short Novels (original 1958; edición 1958)

por William Faulkner

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"You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore." --William Faulkner   These short works offer three different approaches to Faulkner, each representative of his work as a whole. Spotted Horses is a hilarious account of a horse auction, and pits the "cold practicality" of women against the boyish folly of men. Old Man is something of an adventure story. When a flood ravages the countryside of the lower Mississippi, a convict finds himself adrift with a pregnant woman. And The Bear, perhaps his best known shorter work, is the story of a boy's coming to terms wit the adult world. By learning how to hunt, the boy is taught the real meaning of pride, humility, and courage.… (más)
Miembro:SylviaPlathLibrary
Título:Three Famous Short Novels
Autores:William Faulkner
Info:Random House (1958), Paperback
Colecciones:Tu biblioteca, Referenced in The Journals (2000)
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Etiquetas:Ninguno

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Three Famous Short Novels: Spotted Horses Old Man The Bear por William Faulkner (1958)

Añadido recientemente porbiblioteca privada, LHSELA, Monarch64, mbeec, thatonegrrl, outofideas, BitsAndBytes, nanoqueen, Al_Ennis
Bibliotecas de Figuras NotablesNelson Algren, Sylvia Plath, Flannery O'Connor

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[The Bear] is quintessential Faulkner, I think. Dense prose. Fragmented timeline. Astonishingly long sentences that rush you along with surprising power, crashing headlong like wild rapids, leaving you breathless and not entirely sure you got it all. Guys doing guy stuff. Family heritage, family destiny. Culturally suppressed racial tension.

A coming of age story, it has Isaac (Ike) McCaslin at its center, although man's relationship with the land and with his fellow men is the thematic core of the story. Initially, The Bear focuses on annual two-week-long November hunts at a vast wilderness tract. The narrator reports:

It was of the men, not white nor black nor red but men, hunters, with the will and hardihood to endure and the humility and skill to survive, and the dogs and the bear and deer juxtaposed and reliefed against it, ordered and compelled by and within the wilderness in the ancient and unremitting contest according to the ancient and immitigable rules which voided all regrets and brooked no quarter…

Isaac is ten when he first goes on the hunt; he is chaperoned--rather...taught, coached, mentored in woods and hunting lore--by Sam Fathers, son of a Negro slave and a Chickasaw chief. Isaac learns to navigate the wilderness using a compass, then without the compass. By the third year, he's rising before the others and striking out on his own. He's motivated by tales of Old Ben, a massive, wiley old bear, a legend--hind paw damaged by a trap, carrying in his hide dozens of slugs that didn't kill him, feared by all the hunting dogs, many of which he's killed over the years.

…[O]ne morning, it was in the second week, he heard the dogs...They didn't sound like any running dogs he had ever heard before even. Then he found that Sam...had himself moved up beside him. "There," he said. "Listen." The boy listened...He could hear Sam breathing at his shoulder. He saw the arched curve of the old man's inhaling nostrils.
   "It's Old Ben!" he cried, whispering.
   Sam didn't move save for the slow gradual turning of his head as the voices faded on and the faint steady rapid arch and collapse of his nostrils. "Hah," he said. "Not even running. Walking."
   "But up here!" the boy cried. "Way up here!"
   "He do it every year," Sam said. "Once. Ash and Boon say he comes up here to run the other little bears away. Tell them to get to hell out of here and stay out until the hunters are gone. Maybe...He dont care no more for bears than he does for dogs or men neither. He come to see who's here, who's new in camp this year, whether he can shoot or not, can stay or not. Whether we got the dog yet that can bay and hold him until a man gets there with a gun. Because he's the head bear. He's the man."


Isaac and Sam eventually do see Ben, up close too, but neither takes a shot at him. All too soon, the hunters focus on actually bagging this bear, instead of simply trading Old Ben tales. They've got to find a dog big enough and fearless enough to track and attack the bear.

And when the deed is done, the entire annual hunt ritual collapses. Another life lesson for Isaac.

But Faulkner kept this story going, with a section that works best, I think, in the context of Go Down, Moses. The Bear has appeared in several forms, first as a story/novella, then integrated into [Go Down, Moses], a collection of interrelated stories that Faulkner viewed as a novel, both versions being published in 1942. In 1955, a third version was published in Faulkner's collection of hunting stories, [Big Woods]. In 1958, it was published yet again in [Three Famous Short Novels] (the other short novels being Spotted Horses and Old Man). This is the version I re-read. (And since I now feel compelled to re-read Go Down, Moses I'll be revisiting The Bear again soon.)
1 vota weird_O | Mar 9, 2017 |
Spotted Horses: In this story a stranger from Texas brings a herd of wild horses into Faulkner’s signature Yoknapatawpha County. Even before the auction begins, the locals can see that these horses are far to wild to be tamed and are reluctant to purchase them. The stranger proceeds with the auction anyway, then leaves town immediately, leaving the buyers to deal with the horses. This was my favorite of the three novellas. Faulkner brings in some of the characters from his other books, and his writing style and plot were easy to follow.

Old Man: When the river floods, the convicts at a prison farm are evacuated along with the rest of the local residents. Some of the convicts are sent out in rowboats to rescue people trapped by the flood waters. Our main character, who has no idea how to work a boat, gets lost, accidentally finds the woman he was sent to rescue, and spends the rest of the story trying to get her, the boat, and himself back to the authorities. They spend some time staying with a Creole man who hunts alligators, and the convict quickly becomes something of a local celebrity because he wrestles them and kills them with a knife instead of shooting them from a distance. This story was pretty good, but it did have its confusing moments as seems to be typical of a lot of Faulkner’s work. Also, the blurb on the back of the book made it seem hilarious, when it really wasn’t funny at all. That was slightly disappointing, but not Faulkner’s fault.

The Bear: Another novella set in Yoknapatawpha County with Faulkner’s familiar characters, The Bear is about Old Ben, a bear who is unkillable, and the hunters who finally kill him. I had some trouble with this one. The first three chapters were fine, then chapter four got so abstract that I had no idea what was Faulkner was talking about. By the time I got to chapter five, which was closer to understandable, I had reached the point that I didn’t care anymore. ( )
  AmandaL. | Jan 16, 2016 |
I could have used a guide or Cliff's Notes to make it through The Bear. The first part was fine, as it told the story of a boy learning to hunt in the forest with older relatives and friends. But after the death of Old Ben, the style changed dramatically and I had a much more difficult time figuring out what was going on, and even who was speaking. The other two short works were not as difficult. Spotted Horses was interesting and moved quickly, but felt unfinished to me, as if there should have been more to the story. Old Man was my favorite of the three. I enjoyed the strange journey of the convict and the women in a boat on the flooding river. ( )
  Pferdina | Jul 20, 2015 |
I think I liked Spotted Horses the best of them. ( )
  aegossman | Feb 25, 2015 |
"Old Man" I've now read twice and neither time have I read it in its full context. The first time I read it, it was part of The Famous Short Novels which I read and released through BookCrossing but didn't review on this blog. I've since done some research on "Old Man" and have learned that it is actually part of a longer and more typical Faulkner novel, If I Forget Thee, Jerusalem, consisting of two different but complimentary narratives: "The Wild Palms" and "Old Man". Some reviews say these two narratives are separate novellas and an equal number says that the two are one novel and can't be separated out as unique stories (even though a variety of book editors would disagree).

From my BookCrossing review I can see that last time I didn't like the book. I know that when I read it I was rushed and also suffering from the early stages of morning sickness (although I didn't know it at the time). With both readings I picked up on a O Brother Where Art Thou? vibe, the only difference being that this time I found the story humorous and entertaining.

I don't know if I've matured as a reader in 18 months or I was just in the right mind set but this second reading of "Old Man" was the first time that I really felt like I understood what all the fuss was about William Faulkner as a writer. ( )
  pussreboots | Oct 22, 2014 |
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"You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore." --William Faulkner   These short works offer three different approaches to Faulkner, each representative of his work as a whole. Spotted Horses is a hilarious account of a horse auction, and pits the "cold practicality" of women against the boyish folly of men. Old Man is something of an adventure story. When a flood ravages the countryside of the lower Mississippi, a convict finds himself adrift with a pregnant woman. And The Bear, perhaps his best known shorter work, is the story of a boy's coming to terms wit the adult world. By learning how to hunt, the boy is taught the real meaning of pride, humility, and courage.

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