A Rose for Emily Analysis Notes

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The narrator tells us twice that Miss Emily is similar to an idol, suggesting that because she was raised to think she is above others, and because others were raised to look at her that way as well, she is permanently cut off from other people.

Miss Emily sat in it, the light behind her, and her upright torso motionless as that of an idol. Now and then we would see her in one of the downstairs windows--she had evidently shut up the top floor of the house--like the carven torso of an idol physically alive but spiritually and psychologically dead. Faulkner describes Emily dressed in black, as though in mourning, her eyes comparable to "two small pieces of coal pressed into a lump of dough."  She is obese, not simply plump. "She looked bloated, like a body long submerged in motionless water, and of that pallid hue."

story spins backwards and forwards in time like memory. The story's structure is meant to mimic the way that memories are passed on from one generation to the next.

When Miss Emily begins dating Homer Barron, she is trying to free herself from her father's past control, and from the tradition of being a proper lady.

The action of killing Homer Barron can be understood that Miss Emily was afraid that he would leave her, afraid of letting him go, so she decided to kill him, so that she doesn't have to afraid of losing him, of changing, Homer Barron would still stay with her forever.

Emily was the proof of a person who always lived on the shadow of the past. Grierson's house "it was a big, squarish frame house that had once been white, decorated with cupolas and spires and scrolled balconies in the heavily lightsome style of the seventies, set on what had once been our most select street." The society was changing every minutes but still, Emily's house was still remained like a symbol of seventieth century. The second evident show in the first flashback of the story, the event that Miss Emily declined to pay taxes. In her mind, her family...
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