Isolated and disdained by his modern-day universe, Joe Christmas is the supporter who merely learns how to destruct or be destroyed. In other words, William Faulkner, writer of Light in August, pictures the anti-hero unable to contend unfeelingness with fondness because Joe has ne’er known kindness, commiseration, or love. Experiences in his life, such as denial of maternal love of any kind and isolation within society, impinge on his behaviour and finally change his ability to pull off a societal being. Faulkner illuminates this through his examination of the universe by the father-son figure, the careless usage of misogynism, and isolation through the Christ image.
Doc Hines, an puzzling janitor, normally sits in the room access gazing fixedly at Joe Christmas. Put in an orphanhood by his ain gramps, the male child spends his first five old ages of life seting to damnation in that he suffers torture for the colour of his tegument. Mr. Hines is the cause of the uncertainness of Christmas ‘s character, due to his hideous spiritual beliefs. When a going colored circus performing artist impregnates Hines ‘s single girl Milly, he gets ferocious and believes further that Joe is “ [ aˆ¦ ] God ‘s abomination of womanflesh! ” ( Faulkner 373 ) . Despite his girl ‘s denial, Hines insists that the kid ‘s male parent has Negro blood and brings the newborn to a Memphis orphanhood, where there is no acknowledgment of his household or the colour of his tegument. This farther illustrates the start to his broken life. Doc Hines conceals his relationship to the kid and works as a janitor at the orphanhood so that he can promote the other orphan kids to name Joe a “ nigga ” and learn Joe that it is a expletive to hold Negro blood. By utilizing faith as his ain shield, Hines ironically fails to see his wickednesss and alternatively sees his actions as the most indispensable and virtuous title and the work of God. He farther claims that he communicates with God, “ God give old Doc Hines his opportunity and so old Doc Hines give God His opportunity excessively, ” ( Faulkner 371 ) as if he considers himself an equal to God.
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The father-son connexion appears through the few ways Hines ‘ actions are similar to those of Joe Christmas. Before Christmas is born, Doc Hines goes around “ Negro churches ” and violently preaches white domination inside the church. Before being “ captured ” Christmas does precisely the same, except he curses the attenders and God. The unkempt and vindictive adult male uses his absolute, unyielding sense of rightfulness to bewray those who are closest to him. Believing in every facet that Whites are distinguished, Doc Hines inflicts confusion on Joe Christmas, doing him unsure about his being. Christmas, the wronged boy, is unsure of his individuality in the universe, “ [ aˆ¦ ] he refuses to go a member of the black community because he realizes that his really credence of his ain black blood means his damnation as an abstraction in the personal design of work forces ” ( Malin 20 ) . In a similar manner he can non go a portion of the white race because he hates the Southern community, which can non accept his mixture every bit good. Joe is non certain about any definite position as an person because he can non root himself in either the white or the black community. Faulkner ‘s symbolic presentation of the colour of tegument, suggests that the relentless ideas of the boy are as indefinite and helter-skelter as his blood mixture. Hines feels justified by God to kill Joe ‘s “ black ‘ male parent, let Milly ‘s decease during childbearing, and topographic point Joe in an orphanhood where his ruinous journey Begins. Not cognizing the name, or the image of his male parent, Christmas has been mentally abused by his male parent figure, Hines. Uncle Doc, the male parent, is finally responsible for the province of Joe Christmas because he sees faith as an issue of race and preaches the violent death of all who are unlike him and non white. These iniquitous actions of Hines cause the transmutation of Joe ‘s hesitating life, to his certainty of hatred toward the universe.
Light in August, better known as a narrative of an abandoned kid plagued with confusion and malaise with adult females, overflows with female characters. Filled with adult females who play the function of stepmothers, grandmas, and lovers ; each adult female is greatly conducive by feeding the fire of Faulkner ‘s misogynism, better known as the hate of adult females. Faulkner characterizes females as weak and simple who must delight work forces ‘s sexual desires. Bringing forth the developing subject of misogynism, Miss Atkins acts as the accelerator for Christmas ‘ womb-to-tomb uncomfortableness and choler towards adult females. Miss Atkins is a dietitian at the orphanhood in which Joe lives and against her wants submits to the sexual desires of the janitor ; “ No, Charley! Charley please! Please Charley! ” ( Faulkner 121 ) . Hidden behind a drape approximately around the age of five, Christmas experiences this upseting event which shortly begins his violent position of adult females.
A hunched, timid adult female with a face that makes her look well older than her hubby, Mrs. McEachern, is the most kind-hearted adult female in the novel. She smothers Joe with love, and ironically becomes the most bitterly hated of all adult females to hold come into Joe ‘s life. He hates her invasion in his life because she attempts to do Joe show emotion.