A Rose For Emily : The Heart Of Southern Gothic Essay

1320 Words Sep 24th, 2014 6 Pages
A Rose for Emily: The Heart of Southern Gothic When Miss Emily Grierson died, so did the last generation of the antebellum South. She was Old Dixie’s last true daughter. Her family, once wealthy and proud, is now gone and all that remains is a house, a decaying monument to the former stature of the Griersons. The town of Jefferson treats her as a tradition, and while there may be rumors among the townspeople, there is a pervasive feeling of uneasiness in how they relate to Emily. The narrator seems to hold a certain respect for Emily that is possibly borne out of this uneasiness, or perhaps fear of her. At the end of Emily’s life, the fear is fully realized. Her corpse is the corpse of the Southern aristocracy, of families who lived on the backs of the families they bought from and sold in slavery. Emily’s father, who dies when Emily is around 30 years old, seems to have been a well-respected man. Mr. Grierson was from a Southern family of tradition and wealth, borne out of slaving, although that is not specifically mentioned. They seem to have been bankrupted by the Civil War and the emancipation of slaves, and all that remains of the Grierson’s one-time affluence is their once grand house. It is specifically mentioned that the streets surrounding the house are littered with cotton gins, the item that made cotton plantations so extremely profitable when combined with slave labor. When Mr. Grierson passes he leaves Emily destitute, but the town’s Mayor gives her a…

Related Documents