Applying Social Anthropology to Faulkner’s A Rose for Emily

Literature has actually constantly worked as a terrific resource for documenting the past. In spite of its imaginary qualities, its ability to represent people of a specific generation makes it an important instrument to assist social anthropologists characterize societies.

In specific, William Faulkner’s A Rose for Emily provides information about the Southern American people in the early 1900s.

Reviewing the story’s characterization and angle of narrative, readers can quickly develop a view of Southern people’s attitudes and worths.

Particular attitudes and worths are shown in the story as it concentrates on a single significant character, Miss Emily Grierson. Born in a noble household in the early 1900s, Miss Emily is bound to send to strict household rules and traditions that her society imposes, among which is offering utmost respect to her father, who raises her up on his own.

Visualized as a woman with extremely strong attachment and dependence on her daddy, Miss Emily finds it too tough to carry on after the death of the old guy. Such suggests the value the Southerners offered their household, especially their moms and dads, however likewise reveals the downsides of authoritarian being a parent practiced in those times.

With her daddy as her only guide, Emily is treated with preciosity (West 193). This makes her believe that she is different from other women, and that no male really deserves her. This frame of mind significantly impacts the method she relates with others, particularly with males. Her dad’s restriction on her, which is mainly due to the social standing they attempt to keep, badly affects Miss Emily’s view of life and relationship.

As the story recommends, preciosity results in a psychological imbalance, which is intensified by the loss of her father. Her rejection to bury her daddy, her murder of Homer, and the years she spent sleeping with the latter’s cadaver suggest a distorted mentality and household orientation.

In Littler (pointed out in Akers), Faulkner himself revealed sympathy towards his character. This describes the reason that he produced Miss Emily’s character.

Having observed the results of aristocratic household system, Faulkner tries to make his readers feel ludicrous about Miss Emily’s fate, therefore implying the need to review specific family worths practiced throughout his time. Nevertheless, while his attempt to provide social criticism may excite sympathy towards ladies like Miss Emily, it may likewise cause readers to mock the characters and the society they reside in thinking about the story’s angle of narrative.

Narrated by limited-seeing storyteller, the story suggests predisposition on the part of Miss Emily and even the townspeople. Beginning with the lead character’s funeral service, the storyteller may be presumed to be of younger age than Miss Emily. If the story begins with Miss Emily’s childhood, readers may be led to believe that the narrator is Miss Emily’s modern. Nevertheless, considering that it highlights not just the funeral service however likewise the gothic aspects (Littler, pointed out in Akers) in Miss Emily’s life, one may be inclined to believe that a lesser accessory exists between the storyteller and the primary character, despite Faulkner’s expression of compassion towards ladies like Miss Emily.

As the storyteller remarks, Miss Emily has actually been “a tradition, a duty, and a care; a sort of genetic commitment upon the town.” This statement supports the view that more than compassion, Miss Emily’s character is considered with contempt and ridicule. Significantly, the narrator highlights events causing Miss Emily’s fall and the town’s discovery of her madness. The regard that individuals as soon as had is suddenly lost in addition to the death of her father.

This suggests that the people paid regard to Miss Emily and made her a “task and a hereditary commitment” owing to what her daddy has done for individuals, and not because of the way she performs herself in society or how people feel generally about others. Although divided into 5 parts, the story presents three timelines particularly, the remote past, the instant past and today. The remote past tips on how Miss Emily is raised in seclusion and is made to believe that nobody is worthy of her.

The instant previous includes her daddy’s death, Homer’s disappearance, Miss Emily’s purchase of a rat poison, her rejection to pay land taxes, and the nasty odor from her home that the people complain about. These two timelines present ideas that could lead readers to a contemptuous reaction towards Miss Emily’s character. Moreover, the present time where the people discover “a long hair of iron-gray hair” even more recommends the abnormality in Miss Emily’s life, making her appearance more awful and pesky.

Considering the angle of narrative, it is more conclusive that readers would see Miss Emily’s characterization in a negative view. The events resulting in her tragic end portray Miss Emily in a negative manner, thus getting an unfavorable reaction from the readers and suggesting how the storyteller feels about the main character.

Nevertheless, it is similarly important to consider that the shift in timelines suggests modification in the method individuals regard Miss Emily. It needs to be noted that the Old Grierson’s death is what brings Emily to her downfall and the decrease in the amount of regard she receives from the next-door neighbors. This change in individuals’s treatment of a when appreciated figure mirrors the way Southerners value family reputation and custom.

As the storyteller reveals, the people respect Miss Emily for what her dad has actually done for the neighborhood. Honoring people’s contribution to society suggests respect still shown by the Southern American society previously. However, in the case of Miss Emily, questions regarding her morality and seclusion also lead individuals to feel otherwise.