Rose For Emily Symbolism

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William Faulkner’s “A Rose for Emily” tells the story of a woman whose freedom was repressed by her father and, after his death, disconnected herself from the community and became more isolated in her home town than ever before. The story shows Emily’s loneliness and isolation through various symbolisms. Emily can be considered as a bird in a cage, her home. When her father was alive, he chased away all of Emily’s possible suitors and her only way of leaving the house—the nest. Over time, the nest became a prison because even after her father had died, Emily was still unable to leave it. The narrator stated that they had “long thought of [Emily and her father] as a tableau” of which Emily is a figure wearing white in the background and her father as a spraddled silhouette in the foreground, clutching a horsewhip. The image of Emily’s father clutching a horsewhip not only portrays him as a guard to frighten away her suitor, but also as jailor to intimidate Emily from ever leaving. Emily wearing white symbolizes her purity and innocence, possibly because her father never lets her leaves the house causing Emily to lack real world experience. This image of her as a slender wearing white also contrasts with the next and last time she was seen by the townspeople which she was described as fat and wears a black dress. This event was after the “smell incident” and when she stopped giving china-painting lesson. Her last appearance seen by the town shows her devolution as a character, caused by the events she had experienced after her father’s death. After Emily’s father died, Emily has made a couple of attempts to assimilate herself back into the community. The first attempt can be seen in her relationship with Homer Barron. Barron is no... ... middle of paper ... ... had to endure all her life and finally couldn’t stand it anymore, so she crumbled like an eroded monument. Her transformation from angel to monument also dehumanized her as she shut herself off from human company. Emily’s refusal to have a mailbox attached to her door and to pay taxes like the rest of the townspeople alienates her from the community. However, even though Emily never felt or wanted to be part of the community, she had always been a part of it for generations. Many people came to her funeral for one reason or another. She was isolated but wasn’t ignored, people still acknowledged her existence. Perhaps she really did wanted to become part of the community, but something went terribly wrong, maybe it was the way she was raised and her inability to escape her father influence, that have prevented her from opening her door and herself to everyone else.
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