From the beginning of the story the reader gets the idea that the Grierson family is one of nobility and importance in Jefferson. Mr. Grierson apparently struck a deal with Mayor Col. Sartoris that the Grierson family would not have to pay taxes until the death of Miss Emily. This deal is one that Emily believes is to be kept, but the town quickly forgets it, showing that Mr. Grierson has put a strong sense of superiority into Emily. She believes it is to be kept, no matter what, because her family struck the deal(29).
Mr. Grierson is very obviously '"old South". His attitude towards women, as evident in the treatment of his daughter, reflects his old-fashioned ways and his inability, or his lack of desire, to move on into the future. Throughout Miss Emily's childhood, her father believed that "none of the men were quite good enough for Miss Emily"(31). Mr. Grierson did not allow his grown daughter, even at the age of thirty, to make her own decisions. Additionally, Emily did not feel it was her place to act on her own behalf. The name and attitudes that Mr. Grierson passes on to his daughter symbolically opposed the change that was going on around them.
This objection to change continues for Emily immediately after her father's death, and thereafter. When