"Dry September" (Text Key 237)

short story

"Dry September" was first published in Scribner's Magazine in January 1931, and later that year it was republished in Faulkner's short story collection These 13. The theme of rape in "Dry September" is also central to Faulkner's novel Sanctuary, which appeared in 1931 as well. Likewise, the themes of racism and lynching in the short story point suggestively toward Faulkner's handing of the same subject matter a year later in his novel Light in August.

In February 1930, Faulkner sent an early version of the story, entitled "Drouth," to The American Mercury, which rejected it. Subsequent revisions of "Drouth" intensified its rhetorical force by rearranging the plot. In May 1930, Scribner's accepted the new version for $200, and eight months later published it as "Dry September."

One of Faulkner's most frequently anthologized works, "Dry September" has since appeared in A Rose for Emily and Other Stories (1945), The Faulkner Reader (1954), Modern Library's Selected Short Stories of William Faulkner (1962) and Random House's Collected Stories of William Faulkner (1950; republished in paperback by Vintage International in 1995). We adhere to the version of the story published in the latter volume.

References: Blotner, Joseph, Faulkner: A Biography (Random House, 1974); Fragnoli, A. Nicholas, Michael Golay, and Robert W. Hamlin, Critical Companion to William Faulkner: A Literary Response to His Life and Work (Facts on File, 2008).

First Publisher: 
Scribner's Magazine
First Publisher Date: 
January 1931
Page Start: 
Page Stop: 
Edit Copy Publisher: 
Vintage International
Edit Copy Publisher Location: 
New York
Edit Copy Publisher Date: 
Search DIsplay Order: 
Publication Date: 

How to cite this resource:
Coleman, Robert, and Garrett Morrison. "Faulkner's 'Dry September.'" Added to the project: 2012. Digital Yoknapatawpha, University of Virginia, http://faulkner.iath.virginia.edu