Posted in Short Stories

William Faulkner: All the Dead Pilots

Because they are dead too, who had learned to respect that whose respect in turn their hardness had commanded before there were welded center sections and parachutes and ships that would not spin.

“All the Dead Pilots” might be the final World War I story of William Faulkner’s. It’s the last one in The Wasteland section of his Collected Stories. And in this one there is a Jefferson connection. One of the Sartoris men is in France vying for the affection of the same woman in which Captain Spoomer is interested. In spite of the war setting and the title, the story has some comedic takes – especially as the stray dog roams in and out of the scenes.

This also is another story in which the narrator is nameless, a man with a mechanical leg who censors the mail coming in and out. The mail plays a key role in the telling of the story. We also get to see someone from Faulkner’s Mississippi in a significantly different setting.

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