Darl's Defense

1741 Words7 Pages
In William Faulkner’s novel As I Lay Dying, Darl Bundren is labeled as nothing more than another obstacle on the Bundren’s journey, as they are forced to deal with Darl’s insanity and mental instability, when in fact the exact opposite could be argued that Darl is actually one of the sanest members of the family. Darl’s assumed madness is a direct result of the betrayal of his family; the same ones who accuse Darl of his self-induced insanity, pushing him to a breaking point via their own twisted ulterior motives and instability, eventually causing him to perform the same acts that in turn label him as the insane character he is presumed to be. Darl is not insane, rather just misfortunate to be placed in a family such as his and in the situation taking place throughout the novel. He is misfortunate in the sense that his over-analytical mind and personality conflict with the interests of the rest of his family, who don’t seem to know or are capable of understanding Darl. Through his own narrative, Darl is seen as very observant and perceptual. Through the rest of his family’s narratives, he is an outcast; the black sheep of the family. When all this comes together it creates a perfect storm so to speak, thus setting Darl up for disaster, as if he never had a chance to begin with. “In Defense of Darl’s Sanity”, the author states that, “a majority of Darl’s family doesn’t even like him”(“Defense of Darl”). I think this is because his family, especially his siblings Dewey Dell and Jewel, truly do not understand Darl’s positive intentions. Instead, they are just weirded out by his actions because they are too simple-minded and self centered to understand someone else’s motives who do not match their own, making him that much more subjective to be labeled as crazy. Not only do his intellectually inferior siblings misunderstand Darl, but also his own mother never liked
Open Document