# The Sound and the Fury Summary and Analysis of April 6th, 1928

Summary of April Sixth, 1928:

At the store, old Job, a black worker, is unloading cultivators, and Jason accuses of him of doing it as slowly as he possibly can. He has mail; he opens a letter with a check from Caddy. The letter asks if Quentin is sick and states that she knows that Jason reads all her letters. He goes out to the front of the store and engages in a conversation with a farmer about the cotton crop. He tells him that cotton is a "speculator's crop" that "a bunch of damn eastern jews" get farmers to grow so that they can control the stock market (191). He goes to the telegraph office, where a stock report has just come in (Jason has invested in the cotton crop) - the cotton stock is up four points. He tells the telegraph operator to send a collect message to Caddy saying "Q writing today" (193).

He returns to town, stopping in a drugstore to get a shot for his headache and the telegraph office; he has lost $200 on the stock market. Then he goes back to the store. A telegram has arrived from his stockbroker, advising him to sell. Instead he writes back to the broker, telling him he will buy. The store closes, and he drives home to the sounds of the band playing. At home, Quentin and Mother are fighting upstairs, and Luster asks him for a quarter to go to the show. Jason replies that he has two tickets already that he won't be using. Luster begs him for one, but he tells him he will only sell it to him for a nickel. Luster replies that he has no money, and Jason burns the tickets in the fireplace. Dilsey puts supper on the table for him and tells him that Quentin and Mother won't be coming to dinner. Jason insists that they come unless they are actually sick. They come down. At dinner, he offers Quentin an extra piece of meat and tells her and Mother that he lent his car to a stranger who needed to chase around one of his relatives who was running around with a town woman. Quentin looks guilty. Finally she stands up and says that if she is bad, it is only because Jason made her bad. She runs off and slams the door. Mother comments that she got all of Caddy's bad traits and all of Quentin's too; Jason takes this to mean that Mother thinks Quentin is the child of Caddy and her brother's incestuous relationship. They finish dinner, and Mother locks Quentin into her room for the night. Jason retires to his room for the night, still ruminating on the "dam New York jew" that is taking all of his money (263). Analysis of April Sixth, 1928: Jason's section appears more readable and more conventional; its style, while still stream-of-consciousness, is more chronological in progression, with very few jumps in time. It reads more like a monologue than a string of loosely connected events, like Benjy's and Quentin's sections were. Critics have claimed that the book progresses from chaos to order, from timelessness to chronology, from pure sensation to logical order, and from interiority to exteriority as it travels from Benjy's world of bright shapes and confused time through Jason's rigorously ordered universe to the third-person narrative of the fourth section. This third section represents a shift into the public world from the anguished interiority of Benjy and Quentin, and a shift into "normal" novelistic narrative as Jason recounts the story of the events of the day. The first sentence of each section reveals a lot about the tone and themes of that particular part; this is especially true with Quentin's and Jason's section. In Quentin's section, the first sentence draws the reader into his obsession with being caught "in time" and includes two of the most common symbols in the section: time and shadows. Jason's section begins "once a bitch always a bitch, what I say," introducing both Jason's irrational anger not only toward his sister and her daughter, but toward the world in general, and also the rigorous logic that runs through this section (180). Jason's world is dominated by logic. Once a bitch, always a bitch; like mother, like daughter. Caddy was a whore, so is her daughter. He is furious at Caddy for ruining his chances at getting a job, and the way she ruined his chances was to bear an illegitimate daughter; therefore the way he will get revenge on her and simultaneously recoup the money he lost is through this same daughter. Caddy should have gotten him a job, but instead she had Quentin; therefore it is his right to embezzle the money she sends to Quentin in order to make up for the money he lost when he lost the job. Jason's logic takes the form of literalism. Caddy is responsible for getting him money, no matter where it comes from. She sends money each month for Quentin's upkeep; he keeps Quentin clothed, housed and fed, so the money should go to him. He himself claims that he "make[s] it a rule never to keep a scrap of paper bearing a woman's hand," and yet he keeps the money from the checks Caddy sends him; this act fits into his system of logic because he cashes the checks, literally getting rid of her handwriting while keeping the money. He allows his mother to literally burn the checks she sends, but only after he has cashed them in secret. When Caddy gives him 100 dollars to "see [Quentin] a minute" he grants her request to the letter, holding the baby up to the carriage window as he drives by, literally allowing Caddy only a minute's glimpse (203-205). When Luster can't pay him a nickel for tickets to the show, he burns the tickets rather than give then to him (255). All of these acts fit into a rigid and literally defined logical order with which Jason structures his life. Some readers see Jason's logic as a sign that he is more "sane" than the rest of his family. He is not retarded like Benjy or irrationally distraught like Quentin. He is able to live his life in a relatively normal way, with a logical order to both his narrative and his daily activities. However, Jason is just as blind, just as divorced from reality as his brothers. Like them, he tries to control his life through a strictly defined order, and when this is disrupted he collapses into irrationality. Benjy's system of order is the routine of everyday life, disrupted on a grand scale when Caddy leaves and on a small scale when Luster turns the horses the wrong way or changes the arrangement of his "graveyard." Quentin's system of order is the honor and purity he saw in himself and Caddy when they were young, disrupted when Caddy loses her virginity and leaves him. Jason's system of order is the rigidity of his logic, most of which has to do with money, and with this he tries to control the world around him. This system is disrupted when he loses his job opportunity (Quentin gets a career boost in going to Harvard, so should Jason get a career boost from Herbert Head), and again when Quentin refuses to come to dinner, skips school, or runs away with his money. For each brother, the systems he has established help to control everyday life, and the way they do so is by controlling Caddy. As long as she is motherly to Benjy, virginal to Quentin, and profitable to Jason, their worlds are in order. But these controlling mechanisms are inflexible, breaking down entirely as soon as Caddy or her daughter defies them. Each brother remains irrationally connected with the past, particularly with memories of Caddy. Benjy relives his memories of Caddy all the time, making no distinction between the present and the past. Quentin goes through the routines of life washed in a sea of memories of Caddy. And Jason, for all he seems to have cut himself off from her entirely by refusing to mention her name, is perhaps the closest of all to her. Not only is he surrounded by reminders of her in the shape of her daughter and her money, but he is also constantly reminded of her in his anger. It has been eighteen years since she lost him his job opportunity, and yet he remains as angry with her as he ever was. Certainly this is no way to forget her, nor is it any more "sane" than his brothers. Nor is Jason even a particularly good businessman, for all he obsesses about money. In the course of this one day he loses$200 in the stock market, for example; he has been warned that the market is in a state of flux and yet he leaves town on a wild goose chase when he should be watching the market and deliberately defies his broker's advice by buying when he should sell. He is rude and spiteful to his boss, which is certainly not the best way to succeed in business. He buys a car even though he knows that gasoline gives him headaches. And perhaps the clearest indication of his bad business sense is the fact that when Quentin steals his savings in the fourth section, she steals $7000. This is the money that he has been embezzling from Caddy and Quentin, and Caddy has been sending him$200 a month for fifteen years. By this point he should have amassed upwards of \$30,000; where did it all go? Even though he thinks of little else besides money, he is not capable of handling it properly.