Essay, Research Paper: Rose For Emily By Faulkner

Literature: William Faulkner

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“A Rose for Emily” is one of William Faulkner’s famous stories. The
antagonist of it is Miss Emily Grierson, which was forced by her dominating and
repressive father to grow up alone. She was raised to adhere to a certain
standards. So, she stocked with the old south’s rules. Miss Emily was raised
with the belief that no man was suitable for her. And her father is the cause of
her superior feeling. After her father’s death, she wanted to live her life
her way, but every body in the town including the authorities make her feel that
her life of living is unacceptable, and that based on old south and new south
traditions and beliefs. Her relation ship with the Colonel Sartoris to make her
exempt from paying taxes is suspicious. But, he did not realize that once he is
gone, there would be some one else to put her in the right track. Miss Emily
tried to do some changes in her life when Homer showed up. But her feeling of
loosing him made her start with a plan that kept him close until her death. Many
analysts give attention to the story since the first time published. Petry
mentioned two reasons for making “A Rose for Emily” a special. First, the
disordered chronology, Second the end of the story which is definitely a
shocking ending to every reader. So we can see how the narrator starts off
telling that Miss Emily was dead and everyone in the town went to her funeral.
Then, he went back to tell about Emily’s life, which ended by killing Homer
and keeping his body in the “bridal bed.” (52-54) Loneliness can be a
terrible thing to prey on someone’s mind. Apparently no man was good enough
for Emily, that why she never got married and was by self Her father gone and
now she is alone, even though she still have Tobe to help her with the market
and other chores. Then, the foreman Homer Barron showed up in her life. He was
sent by the Construction Company to pave the sidewalks. But, his job did not
finish there. He is the only one left, a northerner that would love her despite
of all the southerners who were scared of her weird family. Truly, Homer can not
give her what she is looking for neither did her father. The need for
companionship is the basis of courting Homer Barron. When the work finished and
Homer left town, Miss Emily was once again alone. And the insanity began to set
in. Even though her cousins stay with her for a short while, this is not what
Emily wants. When Homer came back, her chance for everlasting companionship was
available. So, she killed him to secure the fact that she will always have him
by her side, and she will never be alone again. Blythe think that the most
provocative aspect in the story is the motive in killing Homer Barron. And he
suggested that homosexuality is the reason for Emily to poison him. Homer
himself said that he only like men, and whether this means he is gay as his last
name would imply, or he simply is just like to be around men, he will not settle
down. Emily could not stand the thought of loosing another man; she wanted to
save face, her pride, and loneliness (49-50). In the other hand, Wallace
mentioned in one of his articles that he denied the knowing that Homer Barron is
a gay, because he is wandering how the narrator know all of the details in the
story. Beside that, he did not get to write about Emily until fifty years
passed, which will make every thing he says is suspect. The narrator just wants
to trap us (105-107). Miss Emily is a southern lady. She was raised to adhere to
certain standards by stocking to the old south’s rules. She locked herself in
her house and refused to see any one but her servant. She represents the past
south (a fallen monument). In the story we can see how Miss Emily tried her best
to keep the southern tradition, she write on “note paper of an archaic
shape” in “faded ink.” After her father’s death, she kept him for three
days maybe because he was the only symbol of the south that left for her. She
told the tax collectors to go and ask Colonel Sartoris to explain why she is
exempt. Even though, he had died long time ago (Kurtz). By looking at Schwae
work in analyzing “Rose for Emily”, we see that he think the watch in the
golden chain is the symbol of time. It is in her pocket and not pinned to her,
so she can have a total control of time. She thinks that any changing in time
will involve a loss. The loud sound of watch ticking will never let her forget
about her duty to stop time and stay in the past (512-517). In the story we
noticed that there was an unclear relationship between Miss Emily and all men
that the narrator mentioned. As Curry says we do not know exactly what happened
after the Baptist minister visited her (397-402). Even the Negro manservant who
lived with Miss Emily left. There was something needs to be cleared about his
leaving the scene after some curious lady came to visit. Carry thinks that Tobe
has some important information, but since he was an African-American, the
narrator considered his information insignificant (397-402). Even though Tobe is
minor character in the story, he might be the one who killed Homer to protect
Miss Emily from further humiliation that started when her father was alive.
Pretty much any idea is possible since the author did not give clues to the
death of either man. I feel sad about Miss Emily; every thing in her life was
not fair. Is it her problem to have a measurable life as a child? Is it her
fault to have maybe a mentally sick father? I think Miss Emily is a victim of
her society. I do not blame her, because I really can not feel what she went
through. Even the narrator is not close enough to her to explain exactly how she
feels. Her life was translated by others feelings and from their point of view.
Her life is going to stay as a mystery.
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