The Reivers Literary Analysis

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Marcus Mazzola Period 2 Hensley PIB LA 10 Reiving Innocence The Reivers by William Faulkner is an interestingly humorous book that combines the elements of foolish youthful imagination, corruption, and deep seated desires into a fantastic reading book that contains many unsaid messages. A similar piece of writing is The Store by Thomas S. Stribling. These books parallel each other as they both talk about late 1800’s and early nineteen hundreds times, after the Civil War and when racism was still very prevalent. This book will be analyzed from a psychoanalytic critical perspective with emphasis on the use of comic elements in this book. The Reivers has strong influences of comic elements and a strong southern influence because William Faulkner…show more content…
Sexism plays a major role in the story as, basically, the very reason for Boon to steal the family car, and indeed, the major element of the plot, is for Boon to go and woo a prostitute in Memphis. This is an obvious sign of what much of the culture’s attitude toward women was at the time. Women were regarded as objects, and weren’t respected much, especially in bordellos, known to us now as brothels. If the main female character is a prostitute and there are seemingly a constant stream of men who want service from her, it is obvious that at least the culture doesn’t view her as an independent, strong individual. When Lucius stands up for Miss Corrie, fighting another boy for her, she decides to quit her prostitution and take up an honorable life. Even this cannot succeed for her, however, when a policeman forces her to submit to him by arresting and throwing in jail both Lucius and Boon with threat to not release them. This is a cruel and disgusting example of the imbalance of power between the sexes in southern culture in the early nineteen-hundreds. Miss Corrie isn’t given the chance to live her life how any sane human desires to, because of the simple mistake to take on a job at a brothel. Perhaps it wasn’t even a bad choice by her, as it is quite likely that she didn’t even desire to become a prostitute in the first place, she could have been…show more content…
A prime example, Boon Hogganbeck is definitely a lower class character, and he is treated with much lower respect for that very reason. We come to realize that Boon has a passion, almost an erotic love, for the automobile the grandfather purchases. As many men find passion and love for women, or money, Boon has the curiously strong love for an automobile. He doesn’t have the traditional “sweet” type of love, though, it is an angry love, as Boon had lived such an ignorant, childlike life, he never even knew something such as an automobile existed. Upon seeing one, then, he was quickly brought to the realization that he really had no idea what the world outside was, and furthermore, no idea how to act in such a world. This fact is reinforced several times, especially when he makes the rash decision to simply take his supporting family’s car and just drive to Memphis, so he can woo the woman of his dreams, who also happens to be a prostitute. This is obviously not a thought process a highly developed and experienced human brain would undertake, and is further proof of the fact that Boon truly has a child’s mind in a man’s body. Boon failed the third grade five times before quitting school, and after that point, everybody realized he was better off being used as a physical workhorse instead of any sort of mental one. Hence, Boon can be viewed as an almost comical character in nature, a stereotypical “big oaf” with big

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