William Faulkner`s story `Barn Burning`is seen through the eyes of Sarty, a 10-year old child, who does not fully understand the events and their implications. Part of the reading experience of the story, as of many of Faulkner`s works, is the way in which it reveals how events are always mediated through viewpoints not only of individuals but of local cultures. Moreover, the boy provides almost the only character who can give us even a moderately sympathetic view of Snopes.
Abner Snopes, the boy`s father, is portrayed as a habitual setter of fires, who is leaving town after a conflict with Major de Spain. He sets the barn on fire and then gets shot, but survives to appear in other stories.