Faulkner went on to explain that his ultimate interest was in universals, in the “familiar old, old story of the human heart in conflict with itself,” in “the ageless, eternal struggles, which we inherit and we go through as though they’d never happened before.” Of course, in Faulkner’s view, they had happened before, and would happen again.

Faulkner’s fondness for incorporating older myths and narratives into his stories is evident in his use and reuse of the initiation and journey motifs; biblical materials, particularly the Eden and Christ stories; and Shakespearean allusions. Like other practitioners of the mythical method, Faulkner employs all such retellings and paralleling of previous stories to imply a cyclical view of history and a commonality of human nature and experience. Like the geographical map he drew of his fictional Yoknapatawpha County, Faulkner’s map of the human condition begins in Jefferson (the South) but it leads outward to the larger world, “the old verities and truths of the heart, the universal truths lacking which any story is ephemeral and doomed—love and honor and pity and pride and compassion and sacrifice.”

From Oprah’s ‘How To Read Faulkner