Unnamed Enslaved Haitians

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Unnamed Enslaved Haitians
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Unnamed Enslaved Haitians
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Historically, Haitian slavery was abolished and French ownership of land forbidden by law before Sutpen was born. Absalom! represents the people who rise up against the rule of the French sugar planter so symbolically that it is impossible to know if it sees them as enslaved or not, though it's likely that in Faulkner's mind their uprising is a slave rebellion. Before the rebellion they are depicted as the unseen sound of "the drums and the chanting" at night (202), and a "blank wall of black secret faces, a wall behind which almost anything could be preparing to happen" (203). They speak in the novel through voodoo tokens - "a pig's bone with a little rotten flesh still clinging to it, a few chicken bones," etc. (203). They torture Sutpen but capitulate to his "indomitable spirit" (205). And after their surrender, it is "as if nothing had happened" (205).