Magazine Illustrations


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The first visualizations of Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha fictions were the illustrations drawn to accompany the publication of his short stories in magazines like The Saturday Evening Post, Scribner's and Collier's, the large circulation periodicals that Faulkner regularly submitted work to in his quest for income. Although Faulkner occasionally worked directly with the magazines' editors to revise a story, there is no evidence that he had any control over - or even interest in - the way these magazines illustrated his texts. The illustrations can, however, help us appreciate the way Faulkner's world, and the people of different races and classes who inhabit it, appeared to his original readers.

The following items are drawn from the William Faulkner Foundation Collection at the University of Virginia's Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library (
Click on any image to see an enlargement.

“Skirmish at Sartoris”

Apparently The Saturday Evening Post, which had already published three Unvanquished stories, rejected "Drusilla," as Faulkner originally titled this story. In any case, it is the only tale in the series that Scribner's published. That is Drusilla in her Confederate uniform on the story's first page, grieving for the "lost cause" (below left). The large illustration that spans pages 196-197 (below right) reinforces the design of Faulkner's text: to draw attention away from the tale's other "skirmish" - between the Reconstruction agents who seek to ensure the voting rights of newly emancipated slaves and the male Confederate veterans led by Colonel Sartoris who are willing to use violence to maintain their political power.

Page 193, April 1935 Scribner's     Page 196, April 1935 Scribner's     Page 197, April 1935 Scribner's     Pages 196-97, April 1935 Scribner's

      Citing this source:
Stephen Railton, "Illustrating 'Skirmish at Sartoris,'" Digital Yoknapatawpha, University of Virginia,   (Date added to project: 2018)
Illustrations © Scribner's Magazine.