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The Chilling Tale of “a Rose for Emily,” Is Not One That Is Forgotten Quickly


A Rose for Emily

!.?.!? A Rose for Emily The chilling tale of “A Rose for Emily,” is not one that is forgotten quickly. “A Rose for Emily,” was William Faulkner’s first attempt at a short story and was composed in 1931. This morbid tale states the awful life of Emily Grierson. Faulkner’s southern training, the Great Depression, and the Civil War have actually substantially impacted the story and paralleled with the resistance to alter in the South. Faulkner was born in 1897 in New Albany, Mississippi. Faulkner’s family was a once-wealthy family of plantation owners who lost its influence in the Civil War (Meyer 83).

Faulkner’s own loss of impact is a direct parallel to Miss Emily whose own family has also lost their cash and impact. The loss of influence can be seen when the order, by Colonel Sartoris, that Emily did not need to pay taxes is rescinded by the brand-new generation. Emily refuses to pay any taxes on the town stating that they “See Colonel Sartotis,” who has actually been dead for 10 years. This reveals her determined frame of mind that the status quo will not alter. Faulkner likewise utilized his own history in “A Rose for Emily.” Faulkner took in elements of his household and upbringing into his writing.

He matured listening to stories and misconceptions of the region, and of the life of his great-grandfather, William Clark Falkner, who worked as the inspiration for Colonel Sartoris (eNotes). The character Emily was likewise based upon a family member, his cousin, Mary Louise Neilson, who wed a northern street paver named Jack Barron (eNotes). Faulkner likewise integrated some of his own personality into Miss Emily, mainly his own eccentricity. At the University of Mississippi he was called “Count No Count,” for his arrogant, vain and aloof mannerisms. Emily is likewise viewed as eccentric due to her absence of marriage and reclusive nature.

Also, like Emily, he was frowned upon in his own home town. The town saw Miss Emily as “a custom, a responsibility, and a care; a sort of hereditary obligation upon the town dating from the day Colonel Sartoris remitted her taxes,” (Meyer 84). Contrary to the start of the sentence they did not like Miss Emily; they just saw her as a responsibility, a financial obligation. The historical climate surrounding “A Rose for Emily,” also had a considerable effect on the story. Faulkner was born twenty years after the end of the Restoration, however the South was still deeply affected by the war and it shone through his writing.

Miss Emily is a “monument” of the past to the towns individuals. She is a living testimony to the Civil War having actually been born either prior to or throughout the War. The town beings to gossip when Homer Barron and Miss Emily start a courtship saying that she “… would not think seriously of a Northerner, a day worker … grief might not trigger a lady to forget noblesse oblige,” (Meyer 86). Functions Pointed Out “A Rose For Emily.” eNotes. Gale Cengage, 2012. Web. 19 Jul 2012. Meyer, Michael. The Compact Bedfor Introduction to Literature. 9th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2012. 83-91. Print.

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