Isolation: Loneliness from Society
The time moves on for all people. If we cannot come to terms with that, bad things can happen. A short story, "A Rose for Emil," by William Faulkner, was first published on April 30, 1930. William Cuthbert Faulkner was born in New Albany, Mississippi, on September 25, 1897. He is one of the greatest writers in America and obtained Nobel Prize laureate. As he grew up in New Albany, Mississippi, the Southern society influenced to him. Through his works such a Sartoris (book, 1931), The Sound and The Fury (1929), As I Lay Dying (poem, 1930), The Sanctuary (1931), and A Famle (1954), he depicted chronologically the decaying Southern society. In other words, he mainly pointed out the vice of the southern high society and the pursuit to create the universal humanity. (Meyer 83) Nathaniel Hawthorne, an America author of "Young Goodman Brown," born on July 4, 1804, in Salem, Massachusetts, grew up in a very strict Puritan family, which is where his inspiration came from. In addition, in most of Hawthorne's short stories, he developed the stories in similar settings in time and characters. The author described that time setting is the seventeenth century in New England, especially, Salem, his hometown. Even though he criticized the Puritanism, he was fully a Puritan. "Good Country People" is a short story written by Flannery O'Connor. Born in Savannah, Georgia, on March 25, 1925, Mary Flannery O'Connor was a female southern writer who wrote two novels and thirty-two short stories that are mainly in Southern Gothic style and relied heavily on regional setting and grotesque characters (Ditsky 3). Flannery O`Connor`s short stories mainly centers around the author`s characteristics as a Southern writer and her treatment of religious themes based on her Catholicism set in the Protestant South. These authors, William Faulkner, Nathaniel Hawthorne and Flannery O’Conner, had common critical perspectives in religion and region, and they developed the stories in similar tones. In the stories: “A Rose for Emily,” “Young Goodman Brown” and “Good Country People,” all of the main characters experience isolation from the society.
To begin, William Faulkner's "A rose for Emily" shows the reader about lonely woman. Emily, the protagonist, has fallen down the social ladder and cannot recognize that time is moving forward, meaning that everything is changing. In her funeral, the beginning of the story from "No one save an old manservant - a combined gardener and cook-" had seen in at least ten years (Faulkner 84). Nobody has been to her house in ten years, except for her servant. This sets the framework for Emily's isolation in life by beginning with her funeral. When the city authorities go to her house for a tax problem, she tells them she is not subject to taxes in Jefferson even though Colonel Sartoris had been dead almost ten years. She finds her a lover Homer Barron, whom the reader can guess that he is homosexual. When she hears that he is going to leave her, she buys arsenic and kills him. After her death, the townspeople find the grey hair in the bed next to Homer's remains meaning she has been sleeping with the corpse.
The reader can discover isolation in the beginning of part II: "So she vanquished them, horse and foot, just as she had vanquished their fathers thirty years before about the smell" (Faulkner 85). This moment gives the reader another message of Emily's isolation. Most reader can guess the reason for the smell: Homer Barron was dead. The last proof, "after her father's death she went out very little; after her sweetheart went away, people hardly saw her at all," (85) reiterates the fact that Emily is isolated. This quotation has two points; her father makes her isolation and Homer Barron isolates her mind, which seems to be what her father intended.
There is no getting around the fact that "A Rose for Emily" is a story about the extremes of isolation – by physical and emotional....
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