Essay on A Rose for Emily

Submitted By lanaadvincula
Words: 1026
Pages: 5

"No doubt exists that all women are crazy; its only a question of degree" (W.C. Fields) In the short story "A Rose For Emily" by William Faulkner show that being confined leads to insanity. Emily Grierson is kept away from society her whole life by her controlling and conservative father. only after his death did she gain her independence but only causing her to be rooted to the past, become isolated from society and finally causing her insanity. Being isolated from society, at a young age can only cause a negative outcome to a person as they grow up. Change will be a lot more difficult to accept that people will cling on to what they already know and that is the past. A similar outcome occur to Emily Grierson for all she ever knew were "the big squarish form of house that had once been white, decorated with cupolas and spires and scrolled balconies in the heavily light some style of the seventies" (Faulkner 714). For many years her father kept her locked up in the "house that had once been white" distorting her perception of reality and the changes that was going on in society. when time came that her father died Emily is left alone with nothing but the "house" and an old servant named Toby whom she barely talked to. As time passes by, a new generation emerges outside the sanctity of her home. The new generation followed the new changes and paid taxes; with that, they demanded that Emily paid hers as well. In the past the Grierson family had no taxes and so in response Emily writes on a "paper of archaic shape, in a thin flowing calligraphy in faded ink, [that] she no longer went out at all" (Faulkner 714) and suggested them to go "see Colonel Sartoris" (Faulkner 714) who had been dead for several years. She clings on to the past knowing that her father never paid taxes because of "Colonel Sartoris" and writes in "calligraphy in faded ink" when the world had updated. She refuses a mailbox, an attachment of metal numbers as her address and does not let Toby clean leaving dust everywhere. Her refusal to all changes show how Emily's reality in stuck to her past. Her past is the only thing she knew and she grasped on to that fact because of the fear of change she cannot control. The town of Jefferson are often curious as to what Emily's business is. Because people were always talking and watching her movements, she became more and more secluded from society. The inquisitive society and the modern change pushed Emily deeper into walls she only knew she can control. When problems arouse, the people of Jefferson try their best to avoid putting Emily in the situation as much as possible. When a smell occurred about her house one day the town dealt with the problem without her consent. some men crossed her lawn and "broke open the cellar door and sprinkled lime" (Faulkner 716). By "[breaking] open the cellar door" show how the whole town of Jefferson face problems that involved Emily. Her isolation show her lack of people skills leading to people avoiding her as much as hey could. Her ignorance for change also show as she purchases poison from a local store. The druggist who was only following the new law enforced asks Emily to state her reason for purchasing arsenic. He says that "the law requires you to tell what you are going to use is for...[she] just stared at him...until he looked away and went and got the arsenic and wrapped it up" (Faulkner 718). Her response to the new and changed "law" show her true feelings towards change. She despises it and her stubbornness and lack of people skills drove people to mind their own business. The signs of her insanity starts when Emily manages to have "no trace of grief on her face [as] she told