A Rose for Emily By William Faulkner


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A Rose for Emily
The following paper analyzes the William Faulkner story called A Rose for Emily. The paper discusses my thoughts and ideas about the story, and evaluates different elements of the story. The paper analyzes the style that the author uses in characterization, and a few specific methods used to convey the plot and lay out the scene mentally, giving specific examples in the story. Finally, I give my overall opinion of the story.
I found the first paragraph very enticing; first drawing me in with the explanations of why all the townspeople attended her funeral. Then making me want to get a look into her house that only a few others had seen for so many years. The descriptions of the house with its “cupolas and spires and scrolled balconies” sparked memories of old houses in my neighborhood when I was growing up. The story quickly created strong mental images of contrasting scenery with the mention of the encroaching cotton gins, garages, and gas pumps around Emily’s grand, but decaying home on what the author calls a “select street”, (Xroads, 2005).
The Author’s smooth use of imagery and language drew me deep into the story after only the first paragraph, and it just kept getting better. I enjoyed this story for a number of reasons, which included how the author laid out the plot. The story was not told in a chronological order, thus allowing relevant information to be pieced together in an interesting and different way. It started with Emily’s death, then jumped back in time and finally led to her ultimate demise. This play on time was carefully constructed so that it built suspense and anticipation in a way that a chronological story could not, (Xroads, 2005).
I also enjoyed the story because of its gothic undertones. The author’s use of dark images such as the decaying mansion, dead bodies, and the morbid attraction of Emily to dead bodies was only part of the carefully crafted multi-layered story line that used descriptive language, characterization, and chronology to keep you on the edge of your seat, (Xroads, 2005).
I also liked the way the author portrayed the characters in the story, especially Emily. One example is Emily’s characterization when she purchases the arsenic, looking through her “cold, haughty black eyes” which peer from a “face the flesh of which was strained across the temples and about the eye-sockets”, (Xroads, 2005).

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The author uses Emily’s elusive habits to suggest a mysterious element that helps heighten suspense. These “haughty black eyes” stays silent and stares down the druggist rather than give away too much, thereby amplifying the suspense.
I found the whole story from start to finish, very exciting and stimulating. The story deftly created strong mental images, and built suspense in ways I had not experienced before. The story was also enjoyable because of its variance from the chronological telling on a tale that I am generally used to, which created a sense of anticipation. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the paper due to the descriptive language, characterization, and chronology, which kept me on the edge of my seat.
This paper analyzed the William Faulkner story called A Rose for Emily. The paper discussed my thoughts and ideas about the story, and evaluated different elements of the story. The paper analyzed the style that the author used in characterization, and a few specific methods used to convey the plot and lay out the scenes mentally, giving specific examples of these in the story line. Finally, I gave my overall opinion of the story.
Resources
Xroads.Virginia.edu Web Site. A Rose for Emily. Retrieved on February 21, 2005 from http://xroads.virginia.edu/~drbr/wf_rose.html.


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