Gowries' Farm (Location Key)


"The family farm" that feeds the Gowrie clan in Intruder in the Dust is run by Bryan, the third of Nub's six sons (161). Five of them apparently still live with their father "in the twenty-year womanless house" - "womanless" since Amanda Gowrie died in 1926 (214). What the farm produces is never said, but the narrative provides a glimpse of the interior of the house itself: speculating on the scene in the "diningroom perhaps" when the family patriarch pronounces sentence on the fratricide among his sons, the narrator describes "a lamp burning in the center of the table among the crusted sugarbowls and molasses jugs and ketchup and salt and pepper in the same labeled containers they had come off the store shelf in" (214). This all-male family in northeast Yoknapatawpha clearly recalls the MacCallums in Flags in the Dust and the McCallums in "The Tall Men," but the Gowries have much rougher edges. While Chick Mallison learns in the novel to see Nub as a human being capable of grief, there is little suggestion that the Gowries are the kind of family the South and the country can count on to stand up for the right values; the 'family' defines the limits of their loyalties, and even that is contested by the brother who kills his brother.

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