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Published: 01-10-2019

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A Critique of Emily Grierson in A Rose for Emily, A Short Story by William Faulkner

Environmental factors play a key role in how a individual grows and develops. These circumstances can either positively or negatively impact someone. Emily Grierson’s inability to alter is a best example of what may occur if an person is brought up in a toxic environment. In the story “A Rose for Emily,” by William Faulkner, the narrator gives clues to the reader that Miss Emily was brought up in an environment that resulted in her inability to recognize adjust.

The 1st instance that portrays this truth is when members of the younger generation spend Miss Emily a pay a visit to. The young males saw Miss Emily as “A little, fat woman in black, with a thin gold chain descending to her waist and vanishing into her belt…Then they could hear the invisible watch ticking at the finish of the gold chain.” (Pg. 34) The watch hidden inside her belt symbolizes that she is running out of time. Life has just been passing her by without her realizing it. The sound of the invisible ticking highlights that she is unable to acknowledge time whilst everybody else can. Miss Emily also “Looked bloated, like a physique long submerged in motionless water. (Pg. 34) This characterizes her as somebody drowning in time. She is trapped with no control more than herself and her surroundings.

An additional instance of Miss Emily not getting capable to recognize adjust is her reaction to the death of her father. “After his death, all the ladies ready to contact the home and offer condolence…Miss Emily met them at the door…with no trace of grief on her face…She told them that her father was not dead…She did that for three days.” (Pg.36) She uses denial as a coping mechanism. Her father’s death was the very first time she encountered modify. Individuals started to see her as a person on their level. She rapidly went from getting an crucial person with high social status to obtaining completely nothing. Considering that her father chased away all her prospective suitors, she was now alone, desperate, and with no income. The reality of the circumstance was also considerably for Miss Emily to mentally handle. Her getting in denial was the only way in preventing her insanity. She had no choice but to “cling to that in which that robbed her.” (Pg. 36) If it have been not for the ministers and physicians pursuing her to give them the corpse, Mr. Grierson’s body would have never left the house.

The last and most disturbing instance is what was discovered in Miss Emily’s house after her death. “The man himself lay in bed…looking down at the profound and fleshless grin…the physique had apparently after lain in the attitude of an embrace…what was left of him, rotted…in the second pillow…we saw a extended strand of iron-gray hair.” (Pg. 39-40) Miss Emily has been practicing necrophilia with the corpse of Homer Barron for several years. Homer Barron was Miss Emily’s very first and only really like interest. He contrasts drastically with her father who was described as cruel and controlling. These traits show that he was not a loving or supportive father. Shortly following meeting Barron, Miss Emily is portrayed by the town as “Fallen” (Pg. 37) This tells the reader that she had been deflowered by Barron. Possessing sex with him gave her newly discovered feelings of really like and intimacy. Given that she did not get past the trauma of her father’s death, Miss Emily felt that the only way to hold Barron by her side was to kill him. She could continue experiencing affection and closeness with no worries. Necrophilies are generally controlling to the point that they can not sustain a partnership with a living particular person. Miss Emily became a necrophilie since of her need for control. Due to her feeling trapped by her father and time, the only instance she felt any power is when she was with Barron’s corpse. He would have ultimately left her anyway. When very first seeing Homer Barron, he was creating the initial sidewalk in town. This symbolizes modernization and development qualities that strongly differ with Miss Emily’s stagnation. He was also portrayed as “not a marrying man.” (Pg. 37) Barron seemed to have no intention of marrying her and only showed willingness when Miss Emily’s cousins pressured him.

In the story “A Rose for Emily,” by William Faulkner, the narrator gives clues to the reader that Miss Emily was brought up in an atmosphere that resulted in her inability to recognize alter. These clues consisted of the symbolism of the watch, Miss Emily’s reaction to her father’s death, and the practice of necrophilia. Miss Emily was mentally incapable of overcoming the trauma of her previous. Life is all about healing and increasing to be the greatest version of one’s self. If generativity does not happen, then a person will forever really feel trapped and helpless just like Emily Grierson.
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