Unnamed Jefferson Townspeople

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Unnamed Jefferson Townspeople
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Unnamed Jefferson Townspeople
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As in many other stories, Faulkner uses the people of Jefferson, or "the town," to provide a kind of combined chorus and audience for the events in "Mule in the Yard." These unnamed townspeople are referred to several times. Their (assumed) knowledge about events becomes a point of reference for the narrator to reveal information about the past and about the main characters' motivations. They speculate about Snopes' relations with the Haits, and they rush to the scenes of Mr. Hait's death and the house fire. Specific members of this group include the "housewives in the wrappers and boudoir caps of morning, children on the way to school, casual Negroes and casual whites in static and entertained repose" (254), the "hoarse and tireless men" who try to salvage some of Mrs. Hait's belongings from the fire (258) and also the men who "made a point" of finding Snopes in the supply store (257). "The town" seems to take particular pleasure in Snopes' discomfiture. One of them, called "a town wag," sends Snopes a train schedule (252), and in the supply store one or more of them enjoys pointing out his liability for the fire at Mrs. Hait's.

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