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A Rose for Emily

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Jacquie Gray

on 2 April 2014

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Transcript of A Rose for Emily

"A Rose for Emily" has gothic elements as well as a woman who has been "wounded by a patriarchal society." Discuss these shared elements and how they might converge.
Rumination Question
William Faulkner
-Born on September 25, 1897 in New Albany, Mississippi
-Wrote poetry, novels, short stories, and screenplays
-Married Estelle Oldham in 1929
-Their oldest daughter died at 9 days old
-Published A Rose for Emily in 1931
-Classified this story as a Southern Gothic style for its use of the Southern milieu during the post-Civil War era.
-Wrote "A Rose for Emily" as a
symbol of what happens when
one clings to the past.

Gothic Elements
Combine both horror and romance
Both psychological and physical terror
Mystery and secrets
Haunted house and architecture
Decline and decay
Persecuted maiden
Monks and nuns
Femme fatale
Blandy Morales Medrano

Michael Mora
A Rose for Emily
Haunted House and Architecture
"It was a big, squarish house that had once been white, decorated with cupolas and spires and scrolled balconies in the heavily lightsome style of the seventies, set on what had once been our most select street."

pg. 649


By using gothic elements, Faulkner creates an image of a wounded woman to show how a patriarchal society negatively affects women.
Work Cited
Binder, Aubrey. "Uncovering The Past: The Role Of Dust Imagery In A ROSE FOR EMILY." Explicator 70.1 (2012): 5-7. Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.
Cummings Study Guide. Michael Cummings, 2010. Web. 30 Mar. 2014. <http://www.cummingsstudyguides.net/Guides5/Rosefor.html>
Getty, Laura J. "Faulkner's A Rose for Emily." The Explicator 63.4 (2005): 230+. Literature Resource Center. Web. 1 Apr. 2014.
Harris, Paul A. "In Search Of Dead Time: Faulkner's "A Rose For Emily." Kronoscope 7.2 (2007): 169-183. Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.
Melczarek, Nick. "Narrative Motivation In Faulkner's A ROSE FOR EMILY." Explicator 67.4 (2009): 237-243. Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.
Scherting, Jack. "Emily Grierson's Oedipus Complex: Motif, Motive, And Meaning In Faulkner's 'A Rose For Emily'." Studies In Short Fiction 17.4 (1980): 397. Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.
"Southern Gothic Literature." Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. Ed. Janet Witalec. Vol. 142. Detroit: Gale, 2003. Literature Resource Center. Web. 1 Apr. 2014.
The European Graduate School. European Graduate School EGS, 1997. Web. 30 Mar. 2014. <http://www.egs.edu/library/william-faulkner/biography/>
"William Faulkner." Contemporary Authors Online. Detroit: Gale, 2007. Literature Resource Center. Web. 1 Apr. 2014.
Decline and Decay of Emily Grierson
"Miss Emily had been a tradition, a duty, and a care; a sole hereditary upon the town"

pg. 649

"When we next saw Miss Emily, she had grown fat and her hair was turning gray.."

pg. 654

"After her father's death she went out very little; after her sweetheart went away, people hardly saw her at all"

pg. 651
Madness and
Hereditary Curses
"That was when people had begun to feel really sorry for her. People in our town, remembering how old lady Wyatt, her great-aunt, had gone completely crazy at last, believed that the Griersons held themselves a little too high for what they really were."

pg. 651
Mystery/ Secrets
What is the smell?

"...just as she had vanquished their fathers thirty years before about the smell. ...
'I'm sure that won't be necessary," Judge Stevens said. 'It's probably just a snake or a rat... killed in the yard.'
...After a week or two the smell went away."
pg. 651

The use of an anonymous narrator adds to the mysterious and secretive tone of the story.
Unlike "The Yellow Wallpaper", there is no idea what the female is thinking; this ambiguity allows the reader to draw their own conclusion.
Shows how Emily has been affected by the loss of the male authority through the gossip of the town.
Discussion Questions
Do you think that Mr. Grierson (Emily's father) was guilty of having her daughter go crazy?
Is this story an example of a young woman being damaged by the patriarchal society of the South? Or was he really just a loving father who tried to protect his daughter from the judgmental community she lived in.
Haunted House and Architecture Analysis
The Gothic style of Emily's house creates an atmosphere of horror and suspense.
Keeping the house the way it's always been shows attachment towards her father; She kept living in the past.
"None of the young men were quite good enough for Miss Emily and such."

Pg. 651

"She told them that her father was not dead. She did that for three days... the minister... and the doctors, trying to persuade her to let them dispose of the body."

Pg. 652
Patriarchal Society
A society in which males are the primary authority figures essential to social organization, political leadership, moral authority, and control of property.
Fathers hold authority over women and children.
Patriarchal Society Quote
Although her father was trying to protect her from men, he did not realize that it was affecting Emily in a negative way.
The fact that Emily can't let go of her father argues the recognition of Emily's need to cling to Homer, just as she clinged to her father's body.
It shows how she has the need to always have a male figure around.
Patriarchal Society Analysis
Miss Emily had always been taken care of by the town; her taxes were "paid off".
After her father's death and loss of her lover, she had withered into a hermit; she had secluded herself from the community.
Her image has declined, as well as her insanity; all of this occurred after her father passed away.
Full transcript