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Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute
Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute

Law and Humanities
Quarterly Reviews

ISSN 2827-9735

Judge Gavel
 Scales of Justice
City Crowds
People in Library
open access

Published: 17 December 2022

Investigating the (Non-)being: A Spectral Reading of William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying

Md. Zubair Rahman, Sheikh Saifullah Ahmed

International University of Business Agriculture and Technology, Bangladesh

asia institute of research, journal of education, education journal, education quarterly reviews, education publication, education call for papers
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Pages: 138-149

Keywords: As I Lay Dying, deconstruction, spectral criticism, the uncanny, William Faulkner


This paper offers a spectral reading of the representation of Addie Bundren in William Faulkner’s novel, As I Lay Dying (1930). Spectral Criticism considers literature to be an uncanny affair and reading to be a resurrected, terrifying yet desired communication with the dead. It also approaches a text as “an orphan” which has a connection to its parents but cannot be traced back to them properly. It finds out the return of suppressed past and focuses on the in-accessibilities of getting the complete meaning of a text. Premised on the aforementioned modes of reading, this paper intends to understand how Addie’s spectre is represented in the novel, to inquire into the potential of this character as a spectre, and also looks to illustrate the cryptic nature of Addie’s monologue. A qualitative content analysis method is adopted to inquire into the spectral discourses in the narrative. The findings show that this narrative manifests the non-present presence to question the hierarchy between life and death; father and mother; and presence and absence. This paper suggests that the spectre of Addie works as a driving force to subvert the social constructions of binary and creates a situation suitable for deconstructive reading.


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