Insights on Faulkner
I was excited to learn that on July 30 my friend, professor Phil Weinstein, will be at the Aquinnah Library presenting, "Dark Twins: Faulkner and Race," and talking about his new book, "Becoming Faulkner." He wrote the book on the Vineyard last year at his house in Aquinnah during a sabbatical from Swarthmore College, where he has taught since the mid 1970s.
Phil, who was president of the William Faulkner Society from 2000 to 2003, has written extensively on William Faulkner, but the advance on this volume makes it sound the most psychologically analytical of the writer-genius and of his worries about failure.
Rereading Faulkner's novels gives one an expanded view of his psyche - through his characters, of course. Treat yourself and reread "The Sound and The Fury," "Light in August," and "Absalom, Absalom."
Last year Phil did a series called "Fictions of Race in America" at Island libraries that focused on novels by Faulkner, Richard Wright, Toni Morrison, Edward Jones, and my late husband, William Styron.
He invited me to attend his session on my husband's book, "The Confessions of Nat Turner." I had heard about Phil's eloquent book club presentation when he was speaking on the Island in 2003, but I had no idea how intrigued and enlightened I'd be listening to him talk about a book I'd lived through - nights, days, years of Bill's writing, his talking to James Baldwin or Vann Woodward or Willie Morris about its issues.
I look forward to attending next week's program in Aquinnah and getting insights into Faulkner, the Oxford, Mississippi master, through the eyes of our Vineyard master, Philip Weinstein.
"Dark Twins: Faulkner and Race," 5 pm, Thursday, July 30, Aquinnah Library (Town Hall), State Road, Aquinnah. Free; refreshments.