"Death Drag" (Text Key 2926)

short story

"Death Drag" was published in Scribner’s magazine in January 1932 (as "Death-Drag") but well may have been written as early as December 1930. Faulkner included it in his collection Doctor Martino and Other Stories (1934), and Malcolm Cowley chose it for Viking’s Portable Faulkner (1946). It also appears in Collected Stories in "The Village" section. Of the ten stories there, only "Death Drag" is not set specifically in Jefferson; Faulkner deliberately avoids mentioning the name of the town (186), describing it instead as "a small town interchangeable with and duplicate of ten thousand little dead clottings of human life about the land" (197-98). Faulkner described it in a letter to Cowley as "just a tale, could have happened anywhere" (Selected Letters 205). But the map he drew of Yoknapatawpha for Cowley's Portable edition includes both the title of the story and the location of the airfield just south of Jefferson, and in the short story "Knight's Gambit" the Captain Warren again appears, living in the county, so on that basis we have decided to include it among Faulkner's "Yoknapatawpha fictions." “Death Drag” joins Faulkner’s first published story, "Landing in Luck" (1919), in his career-long interest in aviation of all kinds.

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Scribner's Magazine
First Publisher Date: 
January 1932
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Viking International
Edit Copy Publisher Location: 
New York
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How to cite this resource:
Robbins, Ben, and Theresa M. Towner. "Faulkner's 'Death Drag.'" Added to the project: 2014.  Additional editing 2019, 2021: Theresa M. Towner, Johannes H. Burgers. Digital Yoknapatawpha, University of Virginia, http://faulkner.iath.virginia.edu

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