As I Lay Dying

Describe Darl


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Darl Bundren

One of the fifteen narrators. The second oldest son of the Bundren family. Darl is the first and most important narrator of the novel. He is sensitive, intuitive, and intelligent, and his monologues are some of the most eloquent; they are also a more intricate representation of the process of thought. Some of the interior monologues are fairly straightforward, but Darl's passages are stream-of-consciousness narrative. For much of the novel, he acts as a kind of narrative anchor. One of the challenges of the novel is the complete absence of an objective third-person narrator. Everything we know about these characters is told to us through the lens of a subjective speaker; because of Darl's sensitivity and isolation from the other characters, most readers come to rely heavily on his version of events. He is eloquent, intelligent, and isolated. He ends up being put in an asylum.