Lucius Priest II

Character Key Number: 
168
Display Name: 
Lucius Priest II
Sort Name: 
Priest, Lucius II
Parent Character Key: 
Ever Present in Yoknapatawpha?: 
Yes
Biography: 

Lucius Priest, protagonist and narrator of The Reivers, is both the 11-year-old boy who comes of age among the adventures and misadventures of a trip to Memphis and beyond in 1905, and the 67-year-old grandfather who is recounting that trip for his grandson in 1961. His lineage is white and aristocratic, but his two companions on the journey are poor white and black. While other characters remember his class status, he himself is distinguished by his ability to appreciate the various people he encounters - prostitutes, gamblers, African Americans - for their human strengths and weaknesses. As a protagonist, he is the last of Faulkner's brave, chivalric, young southern gentlemen brought face to face with the traditional patterns of their society (see Quentin Compson, Ike McCaslin and Chick Mallison). But although he is angered or ashamed at times by the forms of discrimination he sees in his culture, it seems that he ultimately finds his place within its conventional class and race relationships.

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