Narratives and Individualism

The readings in class include  Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway (1925), Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying (1930), Anand’s Untouchable (1935), and Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937). All four novels and authors have a unique and different take on the narrative form as well as the view of the individual. Both Woolf and Faulkner’s narrative form went from one person to another, which confused the reader at times, but worked with the story. Mrs. Dalloway’s confusion in finding herself, and the chaos surrounding the death of Addie Bundren go hand in hand with the constantly changing perspective and narrator of the story. Anand uses the narrative of Bakha to show that even people in the untouchables are still people with individuality. The opposite is true for Their Eyes were Watching God. Janie, who becomes a woman of high class and wealth, suffers at the hands of gossip and talk of the town. She finds her individualism by coming to the realization that she need not mind anything that is said about her. She just needs to live her life the way she wants and she will be happy.