As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner Online Book Summary
This section is Cora’s interior version of the preceding section which she heard from Tull, mixed with her own feelings toward Addie, Anse, Darl, Cash, and Jewel. Cora presents Darl as the sentimentalist who tries to prevent them from taking the wagon, thus respecting his mother’s dying wishes. Anse is presented as opportunistic, and Jewel is lazy, always seeking the easiest way to make money. Cora also mentions that the reason Addie watches Cash is so that he does not do a poor job.
Cora recounts that Tull has told her that Anse told him that Addie wanted to be buried with her own family. Cora does not believe Tull or Anse. She responds that a woman’s place is with her husband and children, and since she would not leave Tull and her daughters when she dies, Addie would not either.
About Darl, Cora says that he was always Addie’s favorite, even though everyone else said he was "queer, lazy, pottering." She adds that Jewel, despite being cherished, spurned his mother by urging the trip to sell the lumber. Shortly thereafter, Cora states that Addie was only pretending that she loved Jewel most, and really loved Darl.
Cora’s interior monologue is filled with second and third hand information. The reader must filter through the layers to arrive at a truth. Faulkner uses this section to reveal how tenuous a story can be. This version brings into question Darl’s account of events. While we may give more credence to Darl’s version since he was there, we now have doubts.
This section represents the idea that two people can view one event in completely opposite ways: Darl’s narrative shows Jewel and Anse to be the ones most concerned about Addie, while Cora’s narrative suggests that Darl is most concerned.
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TheBestNotes Staff. "TheBestNotes on As I Lay Dying".
. 09 May 2017