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A Rose for Emily

by William Faulkner

❶This section contains words approx.

What artistic talent does Miss Emily possess in “A Rose for Emily”?

Faulkner and the Southern Gothic
From the SparkNotes Blog
Literary Devices in A Rose for Emily

Take a gander over to our Characteristics of Southern Gothic page for a quick second. We're going to go do The narrator of "A Rose For Emily" is a stand-in for people of Jefferson, and the tone the narrator adopts reflects the two sides of the Jeffersonian nature.

Remember, this is a community that both Faulkner isn't well known for holding back. In fact, he's in famous for his descriptive wordiness. With Faulkner we can feel the vines tangling, the magnolias blooming, and—yes—the dust motes You probably noticed that there is no rose in the story, though we do find the word "rose" four times. Check out the first two times the word is used: When the Negro opened the blinds of one window, It is narrated by a third person narrator who is not named and is assumed to speak as the voice of the Mississippi town in which the story is set.

The writing style of the story is related to this narrative perspective, as it also determines the tone and structure of the story. The narrative voice is gossipy, and most of the information in the story is based on rumor.

The narrator and the town's observations from the outside provide the rest of the information. Emily has no voice in her story; we never get her perspective. As no one in the town knows her very well, they cannot report accurately on her life. The narrator tells us that Emily is "a tradition, a duty, and a care" in the eyes of the townspeople.

Because of the family's history in the town they apparently used to be very influential, they were once wealthy, and they once had special privileges in the town , the narrator and the community cannot simply ignore Emily as an eccentric old woman. In this way, the object and character, because they have been similarly described, take on the appearance of each other. Her skeleton is "small and spare" — "lightsome" — yet, because of her slight figure, "what would have been merely plumpness in another was obesity in her" — "heavily lightsome.

Both are now dead — she literally, the house figuratively — but even in their deaths they are described as physically similar: The house is "filled with dust and shadows," and she dies with "her gray head propped on a pillow yellow and moldy with age and lack of sunlight.

Another example of Faulkner's using extended descriptions is in "That Evening Sun," in which the first two paragraphs describe the town of Jefferson in the present and in the past. The first paragraph, one long sentence, portrays the town's present condition: The streets are paved, there is electricity, and black women still wash white people's laundry, but now they transport themselves and the laundry in automobiles.

The second paragraph, like the first, is one complete sentence, but it portrays Jefferson's past: The shade trees, which in the present have been cut down to make room for electrical poles, still stand, and the black women who wash for white people carry the laundry in bundles on their heads, not in automobiles. By juxtaposing these two paragraphs, with their lengthy descriptions of Jefferson, Faulkner establishes one of the major themes found throughout all of his short stories, the difference between the present and the past, and how that difference affects people in dissimilar ways.

We are reminded of section V in "A Rose for Emily," in which that section's second paragraph, composed of a short sentence and then a very lengthy one, describes how old-timers, "confusing time with its mathematical progression," psychologically still live in the past even though a "narrow bottle-neck of the most recent decade of years" separates them from it. Because many of the short stories juxtapose past conditions with the present and include jumping between different times, Faulkner needed a narrative technique that would seamlessly tie one scene to another.

His solution was to make an object or action in one scene trigger another scene in which that same object or action was present. For example, in "A Rose for Emily," the new aldermen's attempting to collect Miss Emily's taxes prompts the narrator to recall another scene 30 years earlier, when Miss Emily's neighbors complain that a smell is coming from her property, and they want the city fathers to do something about it. Faulkner links these two scenes by simply using the same verb — "vanquished" — to describe Miss Emily's actions: Stylistically, Faulkner is best known for his complex sentence structure.

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For example, at the beginning of "A Rose for Emily," Faulkner describes the Grierson house: "It was a big, squarish frame house that had once been white, decorated with cupolas and spires and scrolled balconies in the heavily lightsome style of the seventies, set .

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Faulkner isn't well known for holding back. In fact, he's (in)famous for his descriptive wordiness. With Faulkner we can feel the vines tangling, the magnolias blooming, and—yes—the dust motes settling in Homer Barron's crypt.

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In ''A Rose for Emily,'' Faulkner details the disturbing story of a woman reluctant to change and the decisions she makes along the way. To help us better understand the time and the character, Faulkner relied on a few critical pieces of writing style. "A Rose for Emily" is a short story by William Faulkner. It is narrated by a third person narrator who is not named and is assumed to speak as the voice of the Mississippi town in which the story is set. The writing style of the story is related to this narrative perspective, as it .

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Writing Style William Faulkner is best known for his unique work in the short story “A Rose for Emily”. This short story has a setting in the early s in a street that was once prestigious and of wealthy people but now is made up of cotton factories and people of lower class. William Faulkner Writing Styles in A Rose for Emily William Faulkner This Study Guide consists of approximately 48 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A Rose for Emily.