Sample Essay Outlines
The Significance of Names in Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury.
I. Thesis Statement: Characters in The Sound and the Fury often attribute an enormous, even magical, power to names. Dilsey, for example, in the first part, says her name is written in heaven and will be called on the Judgment Day. Very often, the name is regarded as a part of the person, no more separable than the heart or brain. This, however, is not unusual. Artists or leaders seek immortality through a name that will be repeated after death. By such acts as banning the name of Caddy or changing the original name of Benjy, Mrs Compson, especially, seems to be trying to conjure with names. Compare the various ways that names are used by characters in Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury.
II. The importance of names
A. A name as a means to immortality
B. The name as a part of the human being
III. The changing of Benjy’s original name
A. Why Mrs Compson did not want Benjy to be named after her brother
B. Why Mrs Compson selected the new name of "Benjamin"
1. Benjamin in the Old Testament
2. The Old Testament family of Benjamin compared to the Compsons
C. Reactions to the name change
1. The reaction of Caddy
2. The reaction of Dilsey
3. The reaction of Roskus
4. The reaction of Versh
D. How people called the son "Benjy" instead of...
(The entire section is 1221 words.)
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