She is a grotesque, southern gothic character whose neurotic or psychotic behavior in her relationships with her father, her lover, and her black servant may elicit many Freudian interpretations. That William Faulkner intended her story to have a much larger dimension is suggested by his choice of an unnamed citizen of Jefferson to tell it. Black voices are excluded from this collective voice as it speaks out of old and new generations. She is a visible holdover into the modern South of a bygone era of romance, chivalry, and the Lost Cause.
Themes Tradition versus Change Through the mysterious figure of Emily Grierson, Faulkner conveys the struggle that comes from trying to maintain tradition in the face of widespread, radical change. Jefferson is at a crossroads, embracing a modern, more commercial future while still perched on the edge of the past, from the faded glory of the Grierson home to the town cemetery where anonymous Civil War soldiers have been laid to rest.
Emily herself is a tradition, steadfastly staying the same over the years despite many changes in her community. She is in many ways a mixed blessing.
As a living monument to the past, she represents the traditions that people wish to respect and honor; however, she is also a burden and entirely cut off from the outside world, nursing eccentricities that others cannot understand. Emily lives in a timeless vacuum and world of her own making.
Refusing to have metallic numbers affixed to the side of her house when the town receives modern mail service, she is out of touch with the reality that constantly threatens to break through her carefully sealed perimeters.
Garages and cotton gins have replaced the grand antebellum homes. The aldermen try to break with the unofficial agreement about taxes once forged between Colonel Sartoris and Emily. For them as for her, time is relative. The past is not a faint glimmer but an ever-present, idealized realm.
In every case, death prevails over every attempt to master it. Emily, a fixture in the community, gives in to death slowly. The narrator compares her to a drowned woman, a bloated and pale figure left too long in the water. In the same description, he refers to her small, spare skeleton—she is practically dead on her feet.
Emily stands as an emblem of the Old South, a grand lady whose respectability and charm rapidly decline through the years, much like the outdated sensibilities the Griersons represent.
Emily attempts to exert power over death by denying the fact of death itself. Her bizarre relationship to the dead bodies of the men she has loved—her necrophilia—is revealed first when her father dies.
Unable to admit that he has died, Emily clings to the controlling paternal figure whose denial and control became the only—yet extreme—form of love she knew. She gives up his body only reluctantly.
When Homer dies, Emily refuses to acknowledge it once again—although this time, she herself was responsible for bringing about the death. In killing Homer, she was able to keep him near her. However, death ultimately triumphs.The primary theme within "A Rose for Emily" by William Faulkner is the idea of tradition versus change.
Through the course of the main character's death within the .
Symbolism and Theme in William Faulkner's A Rose for Emily In William Faulkner's short story "A Rose for Emily," a series of interconnected events collectively represent a single theme in the story. Symbolism is the integral factor involved in understanding the theme.
A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner 6 Aug Dermot William Faulkner Cite Post In A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner we have the theme of tradition, change, loneliness, acceptance, isolation and letting go.
The rose is also a symbol of destruction s in her life. the description of houses and Emilyâ€™s dilapidated old mansion symbolizes change from old to new. The setting of the story is also a theme. The previous posts do a nice job of discussing some of the themes present in "A Rose for Emily." One theme that hasn't been discussed is the theme of isolation.
Miss Emily is a lonely and isolated character. Major themes in "A Rose for Emily" include death, isolation, and the decline of the Old South. Of these, death takes center stage, with the skeleton in Emily's bed thematically reflecting the.