In Memory Of Emily Grierson Essay

This essay has a total of 1184 words and 5 pages.

In Memory Of Emily Grierson


In the short story ¡§A Rose for Emily,¡¨ (1930) William Faulkner presents Miss
Emily¡¦s instable state of mind through a missed sequence of events. Faulkner arranges
the story in fractured time and then introduces characters who contribute to the
development of Miss Emily¡¦s personality. The theme of isolation is also presented by
Faulkner¡¦s descriptive words and symbolic images.

Faulkner uses anachronism to illustrate Miss Emily¡¦s confused mind. The story is split
into five sections. The first section begins with Miss Emily¡¦s funeral and moves on to
her past. Faulkner first recaptures the dispensation of Miss Emily¡¦s taxes in 1894, he
continues by illustrating Miss Emily¡¦s nature no to accepts new concepts. When the
¡§next generation, with its more modern ideas¡¨ comes along, Miss Emily refuses to
accept them (1009). Miss Emily¡¦s mixed feeling about the past is reflected in the
structure of the story. Unlike most stories, the narrator does not continue the plot with
the next chronological event rather presents one that happened two years earlier. This
switch once again mirrors Miss Emily¡¦s unclear state of mind. The story¡¦s disjointed
time frame not only reflects a puzzled memory but it also suggests Miss Emily¡¦s
unwillingness to move along with time. While the reader reads through time and expects the
story to be in sequence, Faulkner deliberately switches the time back and forth to
emphasize Miss Emily¡¦s desire to stay in past.

After the author introduces the character of Miss Emily, he goes back even further into
the past to explain why Miss Emily possesses her unique personality. He also contributes
to the development of Miss Emily¡¦s personality through the introduction of her father,
Homer Barron, and Miss Emily¡¦s great aunt who all influence her maturity and experience
of life. The primary figure in Miss Emily¡¦s life is her father. Faulkner uses this
relationship to reveal Miss Emily¡¦s reserved nature. Because her father is an upper
class figure, some of his ways of thinking has ¡§thwarted [Miss Emily¡¦s] life¡¨
(1013). Miss Emily has always been kept in confined environments that only her father
knows what she will do. The event of her father¡¦s death is a shock to Miss Emily
because the guidance of her father is gone. This explains Miss Emily¡¦s behavior after
her father¡¦s death as well as her reaction to another character, Homer Barron. Homer
Barron is the first lower-class person to reach Miss Emily after her father¡¦s death.
While Miss Emily is still distressed by her father¡¦s death, homer¡¦s affection brings
Miss Emily out of her grief. Homer Barron therefore frees Miss Emily from her reserved
nature. However, the news that homer Barron is leaving town for another women pushes Miss
Emily to the edge of insanity, While Miss Emily¡¦s father and Homer Barron influences
Miss Emily to have the confused personality she does, Faulkner also suggests her insane
behavior may be inherited. The insanity of Miss Emily¡¦s great aunt, old lady Wyatt,
suggests that Miss Emily¡¦s craziness may be passed on from her family line. By
informing the reader about old lady Wyatt¡¦s insanity, Faulkner foreshadows Miss
Emily¡¦s own madness.

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