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“A Rose For Emily” By William Faulkner And “The Storm” By Kate Chopin.

962 words - 4 pages

Women in the Victorian Era, and analysis of “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner and “The Storm” by Kate Chopin.

There is something about a blank page that allows your emotions and true feelings to flow on it without judgement. It is your own creation, one that remains untarnished by the views of others. These recorded feelings allow for an unhindered access into the perspectives of the author. As such, we are granted a unique access into the mindset of two authors and their personal approach on the conflicts of two unique women during the Victorian Era. “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner and “The Storm” by Kate Chopin both look at a women’s sexuality, domestic life and their unique behavior that goes against the norms of that period of time. “A Rose for Emily” is a short story about a women who is part of the cities elite class. After experiencing death she removes herself from society and encloses herself in her mansion as the town around her changes. The story is told in the perspective of the townspeople and how they gossip about the misgivings this women experiences. “The Storm” on the other hand is a story about a housewife and her sexual liaison that ensues during a storm with a past love. All while her husband and son are stuck to endure the oncoming storm in town while said liaison occurs. These captivating stories share how the deeper layers of our desires remain unchanged throughout humanities history.

Both stories delve into women sexuality on a level that I find especially unexpected seeing that they were both written during the late 19th century, a time of pervasive Victorian ideals. What perplexed me the most, especially “The Storm”, was how uninhibited this women was in pursuing sexual satisfaction. The author uses the storm as a parallel to Calixta’s, the housewife, inner sexual desire. Much like there is no stopping the upcoming storm, there is no stoping the lust that ensues between Calixta and the man who seeks refuge from the storm in her home, Alcée. While they had a brief romantic history, the story makes clear that it has been years since either of them had seen each other and both are now married and have families of their own. Alcée merely mentions to her the kiss they shared during a rainy day, and within moments they are in embrace, both equal participants in this tryst. What does the author say about our inhibitions? Is there something about sexuality, at the most basic levels of our psyche, that trumps the moral dictations imposed by society? We can argue that she wasn’t satisfied in her marriage and took the opportunity to satiate herself. Yet, I believe the author is pointing to something deeper about how women, even...

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