A Colorful Narrative

Jul 18 2012 @ 8:47am

Color_Coded

William Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury sifts through multiple perspectives and a jumble of timelines, which makes it a difficult read. Now the Folio Society is publishing the book in the way Faulkner thought it might be most comprehensible, with color-coded sections of text that indicate the time period involved:

One of the reasons Benji's narrative is hard to follow is because it jumps around in time with little indication of the change, other than italics. But when Faulkner was working on the book in the 1920s — "The Sound and the Fury" was published in 1929 — he imagined a way to make the section clearer to readers. "I wish publishing was advanced enough to use colored ink," Faulkner wrote to his editor, "as I argued with you and Hal in the Speakeasy that day." 

"I'll just have to save the idea until publishing grows up," he added, inadvertently launching a challenge to future publishers. Nine decades later, the Folio Society took it up.

(Image from the Folio Society)