The ideology justifies status quo and has quite solid foundations. As many white Southerners, Faulkner followed the authority of the greatest American and European thinkers. Thomas Jefferson in "Notes on the State of Virginia", Query 14. says:

I advance it therefore as a suspicion only, that the blacks, whether originally a distinct race, or made distinct by time and circumstances, are inferior to the whites in the endowments both of body and mind.(...)But never yet could I find that a black had uttered a thought above the level of plain narration; never see even an elementary trait of painting or sculpture. (...)The improvement of the blacks in body and mind, in the first instance of their mixture with the whites, has been observed by every one, and proves that their inferiority is not the effect merely of their condition of life.36

Thomas Jefferson is accompanied by David Hume who in his work: “Of National Characters” states:

I am apt to suspect the negroes and in general all other species of men (for there are four or five different kinds) to be naturally inferior to the whites. There never was a civilized nation of any other complexion than white, nor even any individual eminent either in action or speculation. No ingenious manufactures amongst them, no arts, no sciences. […] Not to mention our colonies, there are Negros slaves dispersed all over Europe, of which none ever discovered any symptoms of ingenuity, though' low people, without education, will start up amongst us, and distinguish themselves in every profession. In JAMAICA indeed they talk of one negroe as a man of parts and learning; but 'tis likely he is admired for very slender accomplishments like a parrot, who speaks a few words plainly.37

Immanuel Kant in his essay "Of National Characteristics, so far as they Depend upon the Distinct Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime" writes:

The Negroes of Africa have by nature no feeling that rises about the trifling. Mr Hume challenges anyone to cite a single example in which a Negro has shown talents, and asserts that among the hundreds of thousands of black who are transported elsewhere from their countries, although many of them have even been set free, still not a single one was every found who presented anything great in art or science or any other praiseworthy quality, even though among the whites some continually rise aloft from the lowest rabble, and through superior gifts earn respect in the world. So fundamental is the difference between these two races of man, and it appears to be as great in regard to mental capacities as in colour.38

Under such conditions, a real emancipation of African Americans was impossible. The established in the collective subconscious image of "Negro" was alive, and (regardless of the real states of affairs) sanctioned racial segregation. It is presented indirectly in Light in August; Faulkner recognizes the pattern of exclusion, and shows in which way the "otherness" has been linked to race, on the other hand, he officialy agrees with the ideology which prevailed in the American South (as it can be seen in his speech). The ideology was based on stereotypes and stereotypes went into being because of ideology.


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