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Essay #2 - Jamie Alcorn Professor Bonnie Corman PhD English...

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Jamie Alcorn Alcorn, 1 Professor Bonnie Corman PhD. English 110 2/25/2008 On William Faulkner’s Nobel Prize Speech It is said William Faulkner’s acceptance speech for the 1950’s Noble Prize Award was too brief for such a thing so highly esteemed. After reading it through several times I have come to the conclusion that though it may have been brief, the fervent power and passion behind his words did more than deliver. Perhaps it was the general significance he placed in the dignity of the human spirit or the need for the writer to reestablish what he referred to as “The Universal Truths:” “…Love and honor and pity and pride and compassion and sacrifice.” However, regardless of how it is interpreted it is made quite apparent that he is meditating on the threats of his time; atomic destruction and endurance of the human spirit, something he believed to be the biggest threats above all. What really struck me about this speech and compelled me to work with it was his overall tone in its deliverance. There he was at the Nobel Prize Awards, standing up on stage in front of all to judge, holding his trophy in hand with all its glory, and yet rather than choosing that time to celebrate, gloat, or even thank, he chooses to further prove his worthiness. He continues with a tone of sincerity yet humbleness. In the beginning parts of his speech he says “…I would like to do the same with the acclaim too, by using this moment as a pinnacle from which I might be listened to by the young men and women already dedicated to the same anguish, ...” In saying so I believe he is furthering his stress on the importance of those “Universal Truths.” Rather than being acknowledged for his
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