Symbolism In A Rose For Emily By William Faulkner

In a peculiar and intriguing short story called “A Rose for Emily,” William Faulkner tells about a mysterious and reclusive woman named Emily Grierson. Although the story is not told in chronological order, the five acts flow in such a way that the narrator is able to easily describe Miss Emily’s character through her actions over several years in the southern town of Jefferson. Despite Miss Emily’s family once being the town’s somewhat social-royalty, the speaker informs readers how Miss Emily as well as the town’s obligated niceties and duty to her began to change after her father died. Falkner also tells how Miss Emily does not pay taxes on her house, not even when she is ordered to do so by the authorities of Jefferson. In another act of …show more content…
The “rose” in the title of “A Rose for Emily” is used as the well-known symbol of the love, lover, etc. For Emily, that rose was Homer Barron and she made him her eternal lover when she poisoned him. After breaking down the door, the townspeople found the men’s toiletries set with the tarnished monogram initials of “H.B.” that had stirred rumors of their marriage after Miss Emily had purchased them. In the dusty bridal tomb, the townspeople also found the decaying body of Homer Barron. The narrator says that the “body had apparently once lain in the attitude of an embrace, but now the long sleep that outlasts love, that conquers even the grimace of love had cuckolded him” (Faulkner 736). This quote is very important to the reader’s understanding of Miss Emily because Faulkner’s phrasing of “cuckolded” in this sentence is very specific. “Cuckolded” means to be cheated and in this sentence, this restates the fact that Miss Emily cheated Homer out of his life/love when she killed him. This sentence is also a sort of a metaphor for how Mr. Grierson cheated Miss Emily out of life and love as well. On the pillow beside the rotting man, they saw the indentions of a head and an iron-gray hair belonging to Miss Emily. By killing Homer, Miss Emily got to keep her lover forever, preventing her from having to change or live anywhere but in her

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