Character Analysis of Anse BundrenAnse Bundren is an ugly old man. He is probably in his fifties or sixties. He is very ugly. He has terrible posture and a hump in his back. He looks like he never shaves in a scraggly way and his face is very wrinkled.
It isn’t tan because he never spends much time in the hot sun. He has no teeth which is probably his most distinguishing characteristic. He used to be a tall man but even when he was young, he was beginning to show the signs of a hump. Addie comments on this in her chapter. She asked him if he had any womenfolks to make him stand up straight.There is not much background about Anse’s childhood or what it was like for him growing up but one can assume that his father and he share some similar traits.
By the time he asked Addie to marry him, he was living on his own small farm alone.Anse has a shy side to him. He drove past Addie’s school teaching job several times before he got up the courage to talk to her. Apparently he went all out once he did get the courage and asked her to marry him the first time they ever spoke. He shied around this and did it subtly. When Addie asks him if he has any womenfolks, he says ‘That’s what I came to see you about.
‘; When Anse was twenty three he got sick and passed out while sweating. Since then he has come to believe that if he ever sweats again he will die. So therefore, he gets by without doing any hard work.
He NEVER sweats because that might be the death of him. His neighbors regard him as lazy, but Anse wouldn’t even consider the possibility. All his friends say that they have been taking care of him and helping him out for years but Anse doesn’t seem to notice. That is another aspect of Anse’s personality. He is completely oblivious to other people and the way they feel.Anse is very selfish and greedy but he uses his own justifications for it.
An example is when he stole Dewey Dell’s money for his new false teeth. He says that he deserves teeth to eat ‘god’s own victuals’; and this is his reasoning for being a penny pincher and taking advantage of other people. He wouldn’t even by a shovel to dig a hole in the ground for Addie. ‘I reckon’ there’s Christian folk around here,’; he says, expecting someone else to help him, like people were put on the earthto help Anse Bundren out. He didn’t even take his wife to Jefferson for the solereason that it was her dying wish.
He wanted to get those teeth. I highly doubt Anse would have dragged a dead corpse around for two weeks or so if he’d had a full set of teeth in his mouth. When Addie was about to die, he sent his two sons away to load wood for a measly three dollars. Jewel and Darl did not get to say their lastgood-byes to their mother because of this. When they got back, Addie was already dead.
Undoubtedly, Anse took the money and put it towards his teeth. Anse would completely take advantage of people yet he would not even let his kids sleep inside when they stayed overnight at friend’s homes. Several people offered to let them sleep inside but they insisted on staying in the barn with the coffin. ‘I don’t want to be beholden to anyone,’; Anse says time and time again but time and time again, he takes advantage of services offered and he comes to expectpeople to help him, just as he does when he wants a shovel.The most self-centered thing that Anse does is remarry immediately. Addie wasn’t even buried for a day before Anse found a new replacement for her. He doesn’t even grieve.
This proves that Anse Bundren is all words just as Addie said. If he meant that he loved her, he would have at least waited before remarrying. Anse is completely words which are not real to Addie.I can’t stand Anse and as a person, he is a total loser.
He should think of someone other than himself one day. His physical description can make someone cringe and so do his actions.