Graduate Colloquium Series: Hwayoung Yi

“Toward Mobility: Talking in William Faulkner’s Light in August

Tuesday, November 8, 2016, 4-5 p.m.
Location: 311 Glasscock Building

picture-yiHwayoung Yi
Ph.D. Candidate, Department of English, 2016-17 Glasscock Graduate Research Fellow, Texas A&M University

The Glasscock Center extends a warm invitation to faculty and students to join in a discussion of Hwayoung Yi’s work-in-progress.

This project investigates how Faulkner’s Light in August not just critiques language but celebrates talking. Critics, often identifying Faulkner as his male characters fixated on the past, tend to consider the novel to reveal Faulkner’s pessimistic outlook that speech acts are bound to reiterate sexist and racist ideologies of the South. Pointing out that Faulkner is actually critical of the male characters’ overly serious, defensive attitudes about talking, Hwayoung Yi’s project shifts attention to various kinds of discursive activities practiced by minor characters, especially female characters, and demonstrates that talking creates moments of intimacy that have potential to move beyond the systematic control of language. By doing so, Yi ultimately attempt to tease out qualities Faulkner proposes to cope with conflicts in the South in the early twentieth century.

The Graduate Colloquium offers graduate students an opportunity to discuss a work-in-progress with faculty and graduate students from different disciplines. By long-standing practice, colloquium presenters provide a draft of their current research, which is made available to members of the Glasscock Center listserv or by contacting the Glasscock Center by phone at (979) 845-8328 or by e-mail at Each colloquium begins with the presenter’s short (10-15 minute) exposition of the project, after which the floor is open for comments and queries. The format is by design informal, conversational, and interdisciplinary.

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