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A Rose for Emily - Assignment Example

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Running Head: A ROSE FOR EMILY Reflecting on Faulkner’s A Rose for Emily to Characterize Society Name School Professor Date Reflecting on Faulkner’s A Rose for Emily to Characterize Society Literature serves as a great resource for documenting the past…
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A Rose for Emily
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A Rose for Emily

Download file to see previous pages... Reflecting on the story’s characterization and angle of narration, readers can easily come up with a view of Southern people’s attitudes and values. The story was written by William Faulkner, a well acclaimed American writer who won both the Nobel Prize and the Pulitzer Prize. Faulkner was born in 1897 in Oxford, Mississippi. He joined the Canadian and the British Royal Air Force and studied for some time in the University of Mississippi (“William Faulkner Biography, 2013). As a writer, Faulkner created characters who typically represent the old South community that he lived in. Therefore, his writings could be considered as ethnographic sketches of the South in the early 20th century. Anthropologists and students who wish to learn about Southern America could thrive in reading his stories and novels. Faulkner died of myocardial infarction in1962 in Mississippi In “A Rose for Emily,” Faulkner focuses on a single major character, Miss Emily Grierson. Born in an aristocratic family in the early 1900s, Miss Emily is bound to submit to strict family rules and traditions that her society imposes, one of which is giving utmost respect to her father, who raises her up on his own. Pictured as a woman with very strong attachment and dependence on her father, Miss Emily finds it too difficult to move on after the death of the old man. Such implies the importance the Southerners gave their family, especially their parents, but also reveals the drawbacks of authoritarian parenthood practiced in those times. With her father as her only guide, Emily is treated with preciosity (West 193). This makes her believe that she is different from other girls, and that no man truly deserves her. This mindset greatly affects the way she relates with others, especially with men. Her father’s restriction on her, which is mainly due to the social standing they try to maintain, severely affects Miss Emily’s view of life and relationship. As the story suggests, preciosity leads to a psychological imbalance, which is made worse by the loss of her father. Her refusal to bury her father, her murder of Homer, and the years she spent sleeping with the latter’s cadaver suggest a distorted mentality and family orientation. In Littler (cited in Akers), Faulkner himself expressed sympathy towards his character. This explains the reason why he created Miss Emily’s character. Having observed the effects of aristocratic family system, Faulkner attempts to make his readers feel ridiculous about Miss Emily’s fate, thus implying the need to revisit certain family values practiced during his time. However, while his attempt to provide social criticism may arouse sympathy towards women like Miss Emily, it may also cause readers to ridicule the characters and the society they live in considering the story’s angle of narration. Narrated by limited-seeing narrator, the story suggests bias on the part of Miss Emily and even the townspeople. Beginning with the protagonist’s funeral, the narrator may be assumed to be of younger age than Miss Emily. If the story begins with Miss Emily’s childhood, readers may be led to believe that the narrator is Miss Emily’s contemporary. However, since it highlights not only the funeral but also the gothic elements (Littler, cited in Akers) in Miss Emily’s life, one may be inclined to believe that a lesser attachment exists between the narrator and the main character, despite Faulkner’s expression of sympathy towards ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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