Graduation Year

Spring 2014

Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis



Reader 1

Warren Liu

Reader 2

Cheryl Walker

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© 2014 Katherine A. MacDonnell


It is all too easy to dismiss myth as belonging to the realm of the abstract and theoretical, too removed from reality to constitute anything pragmatic. And yet myth makes up the very fabric of society, informing the way history is understood and the way people and things are remembered.

William Faulkner’s works approach myth with a healthy skepticism, only gradually coming to find value in a process that is often destructive; his works demand of their readers the same perceptive criticism. This thesis approaches myth through the lens of Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily," Absalom, Absalom!, and "The Bear."

Faulkner's texts ultimately ask readers to bear witness by thinking critically about the process of myth-making, not only in the realm of literature but in the world as a whole.