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As I Lay Dying - Faulkner: Anse's and Addie's ambiguous concepts of loyalty

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  1. Anse's loyalty to his wife's last wishes
  2. Anse's real motives
  3. Anse's hypocrisy
  4. Addie's loyalty to Anse

In As I lay Dying, written in 1930, William Faulkner tells about the Bundren family and their journey to Jefferson. The mother, Addie, has passed away so her family drives her to Jefferson where she wanted to be buried. The respect of Addie's last wishes is actually the whole purpose of the story, the reason why her family has to do such a long and perilous journey. If Addie wanted to be buried there with her family it is mostly because she was unhappy with Anse. She did not love him - nor most of their children in fact - and even resented him for the life she had. It was after Darl's birth that she told Anse of her wish to be buried with her own people: "And when Darl was born I asked Anse to promise to take me back to Jefferson when I died" (Addie's section).

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