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Excerpt The problems of the human heart in conflict with itself alone can make good writing because only that is worth writing about worth the agony and the sweat William Faulkner argued convincingly in his Nobel Prize acceptance speech that human struggle makes for good writing Light in August is a perfect example of this theory In this novel all the characters are affected by and involved in very basic and human conflicts race sexuality religion accountability isolation Byron Bunch has to weigh his need for privacy against his desire to comfort and care for others Lena Grove and the Hines family Joe Christmas is a very conflicted character questions about his racial background and his confused relationships with women are always with him Byron Bunch revels in his self-imposed isolation He lives alone avoids his neighbors and the people of the town works at the mill six days a week and then every Sunday he leaves town in order to lead a country churchs choir Until Lena Grove turns up the only relationship Byron has developed is with Reverend Hightower who functions as Byrons spiritual mentor When Lena enters Byrons life he immediately falls in love with her This fact is very inconvenient considering her obvious pregnancy and the absence of the babys father Before he meets Lena Byron avoids trouble at all costs but because of his love for her he dives headlong into her troubles Despite everything he does to help Lena he is conscious of his involvement in her predicament and what effect if any his help is having on Lena After Lenas child is born Byron comes to the realization that he was nothing in this world to her right then which broke his heart because he knew that he was going to lose her to Lucas Burch Faulkner 380 Byron values his isolation from the town but he abandons it in order to support Lena He also goes
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