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Evaluation of the Topic of Transformation in William Faulkner’s Books, A Rose for Emily and Barn Burning


William Faulkner is the author of 2 impressive stories, “A Rose for Emily” and “Barn Burning.” This essay is going to examine the 2 novels and offer a contrast on the theme of modification in the two novels.

The two stories “Barn Burning” and “A Rose for Emily” are symbolic of changes in a quickly changing society. The characters from both books appear to be adjusting from modifications that are as a result of industrialization. Abner’s dad and Emily have a challenging time acknowledging and handling with the modifications that have occurred in society. As an outcome of them contradicting change, it leads to friction with their next-door neighbors.

In “A Rose for Emily,” Emily Grierson the main character is symbolic of the old views. She refuses to accept that the world she has actually been brought up has altered, some past traditions no longer bind it. She represents the people in the south who refuse to accept that change has actually happened. Emily in the story can decline that her father is dead and this triggers a lot of stress in the neighborhood. Emily refuses to accept even natural and typical things. After the demise of Colonel Sartoris, Emily refuses to accept that he is dead. Sartoris used to excuse her from paying taxes, after his death, he still refuses to pay taxes. Similar to Abner in Barn Burning, she kills the private representing a new world order and locks herself in a room. The room is timeless, as the items in its wall stay untouched.

In conclusion, in both stories, it is the resistance of modification that brings to life the dispute. Emily and Abner’s reluctance to accommodate other individuals opinion and rigidity makes resolution of their conflicts challenging. William Faulkner utilizes 2 individuals, one who is abundant and the other bad can withstand change and commit murder to preserve the status quo.

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