Rose for Emily Analysis

1140 WordsOct 9, 20135 Pages
Miss Emily, in her vast complexity and troubled life, is most readily transfigured into a symbol by both the reader and the township of which she resides. According to William Davis in his critical analysis of "A Rose for Emily," Emily is a symbol, a diety, and an idol to the people of Jefferson; she is a fallen monument and representative of the distant past. The townspeople, in their own misguided way, venerate Emily as befitting the sole heir of "the high and might Griersons." "Often she is referred to as a kind of diety, or at least as a representative, if not of the religious at least of the political and social hierarchy of Jefferson" (Davis 36). She is an untouchable monument to a long past aristocracy. But, just as she is a symbol of this history, the decay and rot that surrounds her is a symbol for its own rot and decay. Additionally, she is used by Faulkner as a warning to others. Miss Emily with her "cold, haughty black eyes" and her skin "strained across the temples" looked " as you might imagine a lighthouse-keeper's face out to look." "A light house provides a beacon for other people, not for the keeper of the light. He looks out into darkness. He serves others but lives in sheer isolation himself, His job is to warn others from being wrecked on the deangerous roks on which his lighthouse is built" (Brooks 14). This description heartily lends itself to Miss Emily who flaunts tradition and public opinion through her pride, her independence, and her actions such as the relationship she has with Homer. Her insanity drives her to challenge the status quo. "Miss Emily's story constitutes a warning against the sin of pride: heroic isolation pushed too far ends in homicidal maddness" (Brooks 14). Miss Emily, as many critics would have us believe, was not wholly responsible for her actions, her crimes. From her birth Emily is manipulated by a father whoe

More about Rose for Emily Analysis

Open Document