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A Rose For Emily By William Faulkner

1588 words - 6 pages

In the story “ A Rose for Emily”, by William Faulkner the narrator introduces the reader to Emily Grierson, a sheltered southern woman who while alive struggled immensely with her sanity and the evolving world around her. Emily's father, a very prestigious man is the cause of Emily's senseless behavior. He kept her secluded from the rest of the town “We remembered all the young men her father had driven away...” (Page 3.) If Emily had been allowed to date and socialize with people her own age would she had turned out differently.

Emily Grierson, the only remaining member of the upper class Grierson family refuses to leave the past behind her even as the next generation begins to take over. Miss Emily becomes so caught up in the way things were in the old South that she refuses to pay her taxes forcing the Board of Aldermen to pay her a visit. Upon entering her home the men realize that her house is still heavily furnished with old leather furniture. Another indication that Emily is clinging to the past by refusing to throw away the furniture even though it is ragged and useless. “Page 1: They could see that the leather was cracked; and when they sat down, a faint dust rose sluggishly about their thighs...” Holding on to these possessions reminds Emily of the way things used to be before her father passed away. The narrator also gives the reader it's first clue that maybe Miss Emily isn't mentally stable “ Page 2: See Colonel Sartoris. I have no taxes in Jefferson.” Emily replied to the men in regards to her non paid taxes even though Colonel Sartoris had been dead for over ten years. But why did Colonel Sartoris make up the false statement that Emily's father had loaned the town money in the first place? “ Page 1: Colonel Sartoris made up an involved tale to the effect that Miss Emily's father had loaned money to the town...” Were Miss Emily and Colonel Sartoris having a secret affair and in order to keep Miss Emily's mouth shut he ordered that she did not have to pay her taxes? Or were the Grierson's so powerful that they convinced the Colonel to leave Emily be?

The only relationships Emily ever had during her sheltered life were with men, which is quite ironic considering the fact that her father forbid males from having any contact with his precious daughter. There was Tobe her Negro servant, Homer the man she was to marry, and of course her father. Miss Emily and Tobe seemed to have a personal relationship it was deeper than him just being her servant. Every one else referred to him as “ That Nigger” and the narrator of the story simply called him “ The Negro”. When Miss Emily calls Tobe by his first name it proves that she has a sense of respect for him, he is also the only person(other than Homer) allowed in and out of her home after her father's death. Tobe proved his loyalty by keeping her darkest secrets ( The murder of Homer. It was obvious that he knew Homer was locked away in the upper half of the house because the day...

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