Synthesis Essay

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“A Rose for Emily” and “Porphryia’s Lover” Synthesis Essay

Through the aid of metonymy and mystery, poet Robert Browning brings forward the theme of an obsessive lover in the poem, “Porphryia’s Lover”. Similarly, author William Faulkner, uses the same theme and atmosphere of mystery to convey the elements that make up Gothic literature. Both, the short story and poem, accomplish the content of Gothic literature through the atmosphere of mystery, metonymy, and theme of obsessive love. When first reading “Porphryia’s Lover”, the use of metonymy is clear in understanding the foreshadowing that the poet accomplishes with the mention of “the rain set[ting] early in tonight” (line1). Although, the symbolism of rain helps accomplish the feeling of fear and terror, it is not until the suspense of the speaker’s next action is revealed that instils fear and makes the heart “too weak” (line22) for Porphryia’s state. The mystery in the poem gradually increases along with the obsessive and “struggling passion” (line23) of the speaker as he describes the method he uses to “[strangle] her” and leave Porphyria’s head “propped...up as before” (line 49). The extent to which the lover goes to keep Porphyria to himself “for ever” (line25) is one of the elements of obsessive natures Gothic Literature supports.

“A Rose for Emily”, captures the suspense of the living character, Emily, through the eyes of others who perceive her as a “resemblance to those angels” (pg.227) because “she went out very little” (225).She held herself as a conservative character. The mystery of Emily’s character eventually outgrows itself as William Faulkner transforms the suspense from Emily to her “sweetheart” (pg.225) Homer Barron, who is last seen walking into Emily’s home “at dusk” (pg.229). Homer Barron lives only through gossip, to be known as “not a marrying man” (pg.228). As the mystery of the missing Homer Barron increases with time, Emily’s silence grows. Letting her silence...
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