FIRST EDITION OF FAULKNERS MASTERPIECE AND ONE OF THE GREATEST NOVELS OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY THE SOUND AND THE FURY: IN THE RARE FIRST ISSUE DUST JACKET
The Sound and the Fury.
Item Number: 81195
New York: Jonathan Cape and Harrison Smith, 1929.
First edition of Faulkner’s masterpiece. Octavo, original cloth, black and white patterned paper boards. Fine in a fine first-issue dust jacket with the iconic design by Kathe Kollwitz on the front panel and a price of $3.00 for the book Humanity Uprooted on the rear panel, with just a touch of rubbing to the spine. Petersen A6.2a. Brucolli & Clark I:121. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. The spine of this title is prone to fading, this example exhibits none. One of the nicest examples extant.
Although The Sound and The Fury is now considered one of top one hundred novels of the 20th century, it actually wasn’t initially received well upon publication. This was mostly due to the fact that at the time Faulkner wasn’t well-known as a novelist, although this was his fourth published work. Because he had not had much commercial success with his first few novels, it is believed that the publisher limited the initial printing run to 1,789 copies. It wasn’t until his novel Sanctuary was published in 1931 that he started being really noticed as a writer and more people started giving The Sound and The Fury more serious attention. The title of the book comes from the famous soliloquy of act 5, scene 5 of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Faulkner literally takes Shakespeare’s words and writes a "tale told by an idiot,"… in this case from the point of view of the members of the Compson family, who are former Mississippi aristocrats who fall into financial trouble and over a 30 year period, many of whom die tragically in one way or another…. Or as Shakespeare put it… “the way to dusty death”. Faulkner used a stream of consciousness method conceived by other novelists such as James Joyce and Virginia Wolf. Although this narrative style and lack of regard for sentence structure can often alienate new readers, it is considered a masterpiece by literary critics and scholars and played a large role in Faulkner’s receiving the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1949.