Barn burning is a story by the Nobel Prize in Literature-winning American writer William Faulkner The story, first published in the 1930s, is set in the fictional county of Yoknapatawpha and focuses on the life of tenant farmer, the Snopes family. It follows the family as they move from farm to farm in the Mississippi Delta.
At the center of the story is a ten-year-old boy, Sarty Snopes, and his struggle between his loyalty to his father and his conscience. Sarty's father, Abner Snopes, is an unprincipled man who is often accused of burning down farmers’ barns. After being forced to move after one such incident, Sarty faces a difficult decision when his father is accused of another barn burning.
Barn burning is a classic story of loyalty, morality, and justice. Its themes resonate with readers of all ages and backgrounds. The story continues to be studied in literature classes and has inspired a variety of interesting essays. Here are five of the best essay topics that explore the significance of barn burning:
1. An Exploration of Allegiance and Loyalty in Barn Burning: This essay could analyze Sarty’s struggle between his loyalty to his father and his own sense of justice. It might also delve into the impact of familial bonds on moral decisions.
2. An Analysis of Barn Burning as a Coming-of-Age Tale: This essay could examine how Sarty matures throughout the story and the decisions he makes in pursuit of justice and self-realization.
3. Father-Son Relationships in Barn Burning: This essay could explore Abner and Sarty’s relationship and how they each come to understand one another.
4. Social Class in Barn Burning: This essay could analyze the issues of poverty and class prejudice in the story, as well as how they are linked to the themes of justice and morality.
5. A Critical Analysis of Justice and Morality in Barn Burning: This essay could examine the extent to which justice is served and how morality is portrayed. It might also explore the revenge and justice themes.