A Rose for Emily Summary 6

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“In this world, nothing is certain but death and taxes.” This quote by Benjamin Franklin perfectly fits the beginning of “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner, which begins with the main character’s death then immediately goes into the tax remission she receives after her father’s death. This is a story about a woman, named Emily Grierson, and her relationships with the town of Jefferson, with a man she was in love with, Homer Barron, and with her father. For the seasoned readers of Faulkner, it is apparent that his stories do not follow the conventional beginning to end timeline. This approach of a jumbled chronology along with the narration style lends this story a feeling of town gossip and also keeps the rising action present all throughout the story. The reader is consumed by the ever-mounting intrigue and the end of the story, instead of being comprised of the falling action and resolution, ends with the climax. This, in turn, leaves the reader to interpret the twists and turns of the story well after the story has been read. It is important to note that the town of Jefferson is not only the setting of the story but also characters in the story and the narrator. The town of Jefferson is set during the post-Civil War era and is still hanging on to the old world beliefs and values of the South while moving towards modernization. The town of Jefferson spans three generations: the Grierson father’s generation, Emily’s generation, and the younger generation. As Thomas Klein notes in his analysis, “the narrator studiously avoids identifying his or her own sex... [and] avoids signaling allegiance to a particular generation, comprehending both the town’s older citizens and its younger inhabitants.” (Klein 229) This ageless, androgynous aspect makes it easy for the reader to connect with the narrator and their story as well as keeping the reader so immersed in that chronological order is forgotten and unimportant. Having a first person, plural, and...
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