Rose Essay, Research Paper
Miss Emily still represented and stood for the beliefs of the Old South while the New south generation stood back and allowed her to bask in this illusion
According to a prominent critic, Elizabeth Sabiston, Emily is a gothic character (142). Sabiston is referring to Emily that way because of the fact that she slept with the skeleton of her lover for forty years. Miss Emily added a mystical tone the mood of the story due to her incapability of being able to live in reality (Watson 180). She was awfully stubborn to the townspeople. This stubbornness also ties in with Emily’s ability to live in reality. After she refuses to Nichols 2 pay her taxes, directly to the mayor, she tells them to go and see Colonel Satoris, who has been dead for ten years. This portrays that Emily’s illusion of reality was greatly distorted (
Arthur Voss, a notable critic compares Miss Emily Grierson to the outstanding Mrs. Havisham of the famous story by Dickens, “Great Expectations.” Both are motivated by their lovers, isolate themselves in old decaying houses, and refuse to recognize that time has passed. Both characters are proud, disdainful, and independent (Voss 249). This comparison shows the importance of characterization
Miss Emily who shuts herself from the world around her and doesn’t want any contact with it. When the town saw her, a while after her father’s death, she was described as “sort of tragic and serene” (77), which represents the condition of the south at that time, and even when the modern times were coming around and a “newer generation became the backbone and the spirit of the town” (79), the south, or Miss Emily, remained the same, locking herself in the past: ” the front door closed upon the last one[painting student] and remained closed for good” (79). Miss Emily wouldn’t even allow the smallest changes to occur, such as putting metal numbers on her door. Miss Emily’s “Negro” servant grew ” grayer and more stooped” (79), aging with her in the old southern setting
Miss Emily Grierson’s struggle with her family, her town, and herself makes her do things that are out of the “norm.” Her struggle makes her act inhuman and deranged. Emily is a living a very sheltered life.
This struggle between “an individual and the society that attempts to restrict her” (Brooks & Warren 158) would be unbearable for Miss Emily. This is what ultimately leads to her downfall
Because her father blocked her from the outside world, Emily became dependent.