By James L. Roberts
It is a novel from Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha sequence, facing the Sartori and Snopes households, representing the noblest elements of humanity and the worst, respectively.
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Extra resources for Faulkner's The Unvanquished (Cliffs notes)
Her first concern is not about the murder, nor even about who did it, nor even about the guilt and the implications and the possible punishment or imprisonment. Instead, Louisa's concern is only that the old social order of the South has not yet been restored: John ("that man" she calls him) and Drusilla are not yet married. From a fictional point of view, some readers might be interested in noting that the above scene, while narrated by Bayard, is the only scene in the novel where he is not actually present.
We do, however, admire his cleverness. When Colonel Sartoris is able to surround about sixty Yankee soldiers, capture them by a clever ruse with only a few men, make the Yankees think that they are surrounded by a large Confederate force, and make them shed their guns and clothes--these actions in "Retreat" show Sartoris to be a man of great resourcefulness, military intelligence, and dashing bravery. We also admire his cleverness in the many ways that he is able to elude the enemy. For example, the way he pretends to be old, infirm, and "born looney" to escape from the Yankee patrol, again in "Retreat," is yet another aspect of his cleverness.
Even his son Bayard rejects most of his father's values. " When Drusilla maintains that they were just "carpetbaggers," "Northerners," and "foreigners," Bayard can only retaliate by maintaining that the murdered men "were men. " Drusilla cannot fathom Bayard's humanitarianism. She maintains that there are only a few "dreams in the world," but there are "lots of human lives"; Bayard, in turn, cannot accept the concept that any dream could possibly be worth sacrificing human lives for. " In retrospect, ever since we first met Drusilla, there has been a strong aura of romantic fatalism, combined with an ancient concept of the godliness of vengeance associated with her.