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MonkeyNotes-The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
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Miss Quentin stops by the hardware store to see if her mother has sent her a check and Jason says no. Quentin sees the check, however, and begs Jason to give her the money. She tells him Caddy promised to send her the money. Jason lies and tells her it is only $10. He makes her sign the money order without looking at it, then gives her $10. She glares at him with pure hatred and goes away. Jason pockets the rest of his money.

Later, Jason sees Quentin in a car with a drummer from the show. He knows she has cut out of school for the afternoon. He follows her and the drummer all over town, trying to catch them. But they manage to elude him. Eventually, he is way out in the country and he parks his car to hunt for them on foot. He gets caught in brambles and poison oak. He is hot and tired. He heads back for his car and hears them squeal away. They have let the air out of his tires and he will have to walk back to town. When he finally gets back to the store, Earl gives him two free tickets to tomorrow night's show so they won't go to waste.

Back at home, Jason is lord of the house. He forces Quentin and his mother to eat at the table with them. He selects their meat for them, gives them extra helpings even if they don't want them, and makes them eat. He is mean spirited and taunting. All the while, his mother acts as if he is a saint, and makes apologies that neither she nor Quentin can help ease his load. Luster asks him if he is going to use the free tickets for the show. Jason teases Luster by saying he will sell him one. Luster has no money. Slowly, one at a time, Jason burns the tickets in front of Luster, out of pure meanness. Mrs. Compson goes off to bed and Quentin slips off to her room. Jason smokes a cigar and ends his night thinking about how hard his life is, and how he gets no reward for all he does. He sees the light in Quentin's room and thinks that she is busy studying. He hears his brother Benjy snoring loudly and thinks of how he was responsible for having Benjy castrated. He plans to send Benjy to the asylum in Jackson.


Notes

It is interesting that of all three monologues, Jason's is the most easily readable, whereas he is also the most unlikable. In Jason's section, the proper sequence of events is observed to a great extent. His memories of the past are done as recollections rather than abrupt switches, and there are only two of these. The arrival of Miss Quentin and Mr. Compson's death are the only two episodes Jason remembers, though he remembers them in detail. Apart from these two events, the entire section takes place on the day of April 6, 1928.

The dynamics of the Compson household are completely different in Jason's section than in either Benjy's or Quentin's. Mr. Compson is dead, as is Quentin. Caddy has gone away and her name is no longer even mentioned. Uncle Maury is off trying his luck in one useless venture after another. Only Benjy is constant; still cared for by Dilsey's children and still missing his Caddy. Miss Quentin has taken Caddy's place as the defiant young woman, but she cannot stand Benjy. Jason is the totalitarian ruler, cruel and dictatorial. He regards himself as the head of the family.

A strong parallel is set up in this section between the now departed Caddy and her daughter Quentin. Benjy's section is the first to deal with the parallel when he abruptly switches from a memory of Caddy in a swing with a boy to a vision of Miss Quentin in the same swing with another boy. In this chapter, Miss Quentin is also dealing with boys, very much on the same level as her mother once did. She is troubled, defiant, and unhappy. And Jason cannot stand her. Most probably it is because Miss Quentin represents a cross of the two people he has come to hate the most: Caddy and Quentin. First, she is Caddy's daughter. Caddy always knew Jason was different--dishonest and mean. And Caddy married the man who promised Jason a respectable life. But Caddy's own immorality made Jason lose his chance at respectability. Never mind that he would never have had the chance had it not been for her. Second, she is named after his older brother Quentin, whom Caddy loved most. Quentin was the golden child. The family land was sold to send Quentin to Harvard. Jason got nothing. There was nothing left for him. Besides, he always felt like an outsider among his siblings.

There are a number of dramatic situations where Jason and Miss. Quentin have it out with each other. Jason reprimands her for playing truant at school and she adopts a defiant attitude towards him. In the car she threatens to tear her clothes off to prove she would not accept anything he paid for. Once she moves to slap him but he catches her hand. Caddy allowed Jason to trap her but Miss Quentin fights back. Still, she is as miserable under his rule as Caddy once was, without even knowing they have that in common.

We come to know a lot about Jason from his monologue. The most striking trait of his character is his dishonesty and crookedness. He has been misappropriating the money that Caddy has been sending to her mother for the maintenance of her daughter. He has been fooling Mrs. Compson by giving her the impression that the checks which she has been burning were those which Caddy had been sending. He goes to a great deal of trouble to authenticate his lies, even making up fake checks for his mother to burn. He has misappropriated the 1000 dollars that his mother had given him to invest in with that money. He tells Earl he had gone to the dentist when he was actually chasing Quentin. He denies having chased Quentin when she complains about it and very coolly makes up a story of how he had lent his car to someone. He is conniving and incredibly adept at lying. He is also a thief.

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