Analytical Study of a Rose for Emily by William Faulkner

AnalyticalStudy of a Rose for Emily by William Faulkner

Inthe narrative, Emily purchases arsenic, but for certainty, the sellerrequests her to clarify its use. The drug is delivered later to herdoor with a label “For rats”. The tag is symbolic becauseFaulkner views Homer as a bad person. Homer bears the burden of beingkilled by Emily using the drug, an indication that he is a rat. Also,after her father’s death, she is excluded from taxes, but the newadministration differs with the old arrangement. Clearly, her fatherleft her financially deprived with only a house to inherit, and theuse of tax in the story connotes death(Faulkner 6-8).

WhenFaulkner talks about the appearance of the tomb everywhere, thephrases that dominate the text are adjectives. They cause confusionand exhaustion as one reads due to the continuous series ofdescriptions such as “A thin, acrid pall as for a bridal: upon thevalance.”(Faulkner 9).

Thetexts’ appearance on the page does not influence the sounds/shapesof words without the reader’s interplay, who upon pronunciationmight change or facilitate the intended meaning. After Emily’sdeath, people get the authority to access a room that no one hadvisited for forty years. The story describes how the door openedusing the word violence and pervading dust. The two phrases aremeaningless on their own, but when spoken by the reader within theircontext, they acquire meaning.

Theword rosein the story describes Emily’s curtains and glasses. Emily’slonely situation and the tragedies that befall her like losing herfather and dying a spinster create grief. As such, the roserepresents a proper gift to comfort her. Similarly, one may interpretthe story that the rose is a sendoff flower in Emily’s burial.


Faulkner,William. ARose for Emily and Other Stories: A Rose for Emily The Hound TurnAbout That Evening Sun Dry September Delta Autumn Barn BurningAn Odor of Verbena.Random House Publishing Group, 2012. Print.