A Rose for Emily Analysis

Gabi Kuhn 4B 11/13/12 1) What is the point of view of the story? The point of view of the story is a third person. The amount of information the reader knows would be somewhat that of a typical townsperson, since we do not find out right away what is really going on inside of the house, or have a deep view into Miss Emily’s feelings. From this point of view, we see things as how they would appear to a townsperson or viewer. 2) What does the title of the story suggest about the townspeople’s feelings toward Miss Emily?

Why do they feel this way about her? (Or: What does she represent to them? ) Is there anything ironic about their feelings? The title of the story suggests that the townspeople have some sort of caring feeling towards her, since a rose is usually a symbol of care or love. They feel some sort of respect to her and her family, since they are the last remnant of the traditional south and the only ones who embrace it the most. The townspeople actually have a pity for her, because after her father died, the association of her being higher class lowered.

Then, it was lowered the most when she started to spend time with Homer Barron because he was from the North and a day laborer, and thought Miss Emily should have been with someone of higher status, as she was brought up. 3) Describe and discuss the symbolism of Miss Emily’s house. The dust all over the interior of Miss Emily’s house symbolizes the traditional south which Miss Emily continues to embrace mentally through her actions and visually through the looks of her house. The traditional south ways are being abandoned, but Emily refuses to go along.

The traditional south ways are old, and Emily wants to stay attached to them, so they linger throughout her home in the visual form of old dust. The portrait of her father symbolizes also that Emily does not want to adjust to the new times. He lived his life in the traditional times, and she did not want to believe that he was dead. The portrait symbolizes his everlasting presence in Emily’s life, even after his death. 4) What is the role of the “smell” incident in the story. What other problems has Miss Emily caused the local authorities?

The role of the smell incident gives suspicion as to what it is in Miss Emily’s house that is causing it. It gives suspicion that it is something like a dead body, because only such things like a dead body can have such a permeating odor able to reach outside. Miss Emily also has not paid the taxes and thinks she is still entitled to the tax waiver that Colonel Sartoris gave to her, even though he is dead. 5) How do the townspeople know what they know about Miss Emily’s life? What is the source of their information? The townspeople know what they do about her house from when the Aldermen visited the inside of her house.

They were the ones who saw how dusty and creepy it was inside of the Grierson house. They also get the minister’s wife to get in contact with her relatives, who then come and visit. They also know most of the information they know by simply keeping track of her and seeing her do the things she does, such as buy the poison, and buy the wedding gifts. They all find out by gossiping and sharing the things they see, especially the older women. 6) Consider the mixed quality of the townspeople’s reactions to Miss Emily’s “failures”. 7) What is the significance of Miss Emily’s actions after the death of her father?

Miss Emily tried to keep the body of her father with her in her house. This signifies that she did not want to accept the fact that he was dead. She was lonely, and did not want him to go too, like her lover that had recently left her. He was part of the last of the Grierson family and had shaped her whole life, so she did not want to let him go. 8) What role does Homer Barron play in the story? Is there anything ironic about a match between him and Miss Emily? Homer Barron plays the newcomer to town who Miss Emily succeeds with in her ruesome plans for him. The irony in their relationship is that they are from different regions, which did not have a good relationship back then, because of the Civil War. Homer was from the North, and represented the new innovation of the coming future. Miss Emily has remained in the South all her life and wishes to stay practicing her values and not adjust to changes in life. It is also ironic that after all of the upbringing from her father sending away men who were not “high enough in class” for her, that she would choose Homer as her partner.

Her father would have never approved of him. 9) Look closely at the second paragraph in section five. What does this paragraph suggest about the nature of the people’s memories of the past? 10) What is the horrible revelation about Miss Emily that the story ends with? How is this related to the overall meaning of the story? The horrible revelation about Miss Emily is that she actually used the rat poison to kill Homer, and even more grotesque, she kept his body frozen in time so that he could stay with her forever.

We also find a gray hair from Miss Emily, which means that she laid down next to the body in the bed for her own satisfaction. This is related to the overall meaning of the story because it shows how Miss Emily was determined to live life and have things the way she wanted them, and she didn’t care that the times were changing or that her actions were socially unacceptable. She lived the rest of her life devoted to the traditional ways of the south, and did not want to accept any changes.

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