An Interpretation of Minnie Cooper in Dry September毕业论文
威廉·福克纳是美国文学史上最有影响力的作家之一，他创作了近 100 部长短篇小说。他的短篇小说《干燥的九月》生动描绘了在一个干旱的九月发生在白人女子明妮·库伯和黑人男子维尔的“强奸”事件。本文从简要介绍作家威廉·福克纳和他的代表作《干燥的九月》开始，进而试图分析女主人公明妮·库伯的双重身份——美国南方淑女和白人女性——以及她女性意识的觉醒和造成她女性意识逐步形成的主要原因，最后得出结论：作者福克纳通过刻画明妮·库伯这样一个女性形象，展示了自己对传统男权社会中的美国南方淑女的同情和支持。
- Introduction 1
- Demonstration 2
- The identity of Minnie Cooper 2
- Her identity as an American southern gentlewoman 2
- The identity as a white female 3
- The Rebellion of Minnie Cooper 4
- The rebellion against the image of Southern lady 4
- The rebellion against patriarchy 5
- The causes of Minnie Cooper’s female consciousness 5
- The external cause 6
- The internal cause 7
- The identity of Minnie Cooper 2
- Conclusion 8
Works Cited 9
An Interpretation of Minnie Cooper in Dry September
William Faulkner (1897-1962), a famous contemporary American writer, is
regarded as the only real American modernist writer in the 1930s who was deeply influenced by family traditions and southern customs. He is also the most influential writer in American literature. His creation was deeply related to his own life experiences. He has created many classic novels such as The Sound and the Fury, As I Lay Dying and Absalom, Absalom! The stories in 15 full-length novels and most short stories he wrote happened in “Yoknapatawpha County”, with their context being about stories of people of several families from different social classes in a town and its suburb areas and their time span being from the year 1800 to the period after the World War II. With a unique sense of humor, his works make a real portrayal of the sensitive issues between the black and the white. With vivid and dramatic plots, Faulkner’s stories primarily portray the psychological changes and development of the characters.
His short story, Dry September, tells a story in a small town in the south of the United States. In the dry September, there was an “evil” thing in the town: the unmarried thirty-nine year old white woman Minnie Cooper said she was raped by a black man Willy Mayes. In a hot and dusk evening, several white men in the barber shop discussed the shocking news. Except for the barber, everyone else believed that it was true. The novel describes a tragedy caused by racial discrimination in the southern society. When it was first published, it did not draw much attention in literary circles. Compared with his other works, it was not noticed so much, but it is a great work. In addition to showing the crazy violent acts of the white, it also reflects a series of social problems.
This paper is mainly divided into three parts: the first part is the introduction to the novelist and his short story Dry September; the second part first discusses Minnie Cooper’s identities both as a southern lady and as a white woman, and then explores her rebellious spirit from two aspects of the southern gentlewoman culture and the patriarchy society, and then analyzes her female consciousness and the external and internal causes of her female consciousness; the last part is a brief conclusion of this thesis that Minnie Cooper, a woman with dual identities, is a rebellious woman with
female consciousness, which vividly reflects the novelist Faulkner’s sympathy of and support for the southern women at his age.
- The identity of Minnie Cooper
Minnie Cooper as the heroine of Dry September had dual identities—both a white woman and a southern lady. As a southern lady, she was no longer young and beautiful, and she lost the charm which she used to be proud of, but she was still immersed in the life of a young age. As a marginal figure in society, she was despised and degraded in this small town. As a white woman, she had a sense of superiority in her bones, which made her accuse the black man Willy by telling a lie when she was not willing to be despised, after which the pressure of survival made her overwhelmed, and her physical and mental anxiety put her on the verge of collapse, because the attraction she got in this way couldn’t get rid of her inner loneliness.
- Her identity as an American southern gentlewoman
In the south of the United States before the mid-twentieth century, the status of women was very special. In the male-dominated southern society, women, especially white women, were regarded as the incarnation of virtues, piety, and self -sacrifice. To some extent, they were representatives of family honor and social prestige. So there came the concept of “gentlewoman”. Southerners insisted on their belief in southern gentlewomen, which made these southern women bound and suppressed in both their behaviors and thoughts. The “gentlewoman” concept is closely related to the rising of the concept of “South” which emerged in the early 19th century together with the storage of slaves in the southern region in order to protect the economic system of the ruling class. The concept of “South”, after the end of the Civil War, was gradually viewed by the defeated South as a traditional spirit in the hearts of the New South which represented the former glory of the South. So the new southerners used it as a guideline to guide their actions and behaviors, including women who were supposed to behave as “pure-hearted saints”. From this perspective, Minnie Cooper was not a real southern gentlewoman in the traditional sense. She was even a bit overactive. She