“The man himself lay in the bed…what was left of him, rotted beneath what was left of the nightshirt, had become inextricable from the bed in which he lay” (Faulkner).The body from years gone by is met with shock and unease with the town people’s of a new era. William Faulkner’s “A Rose for Emily” can be seen using the New Critical approach as a story of an older and outdated generation struggling to find its home in the modern era.
The New Critical approach to studying literature does not look at external influences on a piece of literature. It looks at just the piece. It “focuses on the text as a discrete object” and looks for features within the story such as “image…symbol…tension…and irony” (Guerin et al. 121). The text itself is the legend to the literature map. There is no need to look beyond the words that reveal the multi-layers of the story. Just by the way the author has arranged the words can give insight. The phrases he uses helps to clear the muddy waters. In fact, as the reader allows the “words, phrases, metaphors, images, and symbols” to do the job they were intended to do, the piece of literature “will display its own internal logic” (Guerin et al. 75). The reader just needs to be aware of the form of the literary piece and be willing to pick up on what the piece has to say.
In looking at “A Rose for Emily”, one does not need to concern themselves with Faulkner’s past or the time in which he wrote it. In the New Critical approach, that means nothing as it should come out in the text if it is important and plays a part of holding the fibers of the story together. Everything one needs to truly see the heart of this short story of Faulkner’s in found his words describing Emily’s life and death. Various themes can arise including one major one: the past versus the present.
From the beginning of the short story, there is a comparison drawn between the days of old and that of the more modern times of when the story is set. There is tension “between two generations” (Fu Jen University). Emily was called a “fallen monument” and her house as “stubborn and coquettish decay” while comparing it to the modern “gasoline pumps” next to the house (Faulkner). From there Faulkner describes how she was a town fixture that the newer generation had inherited. The town saw her as a “tradition, a duty, and a care” (Faulkner). She was a figure of an era long gone by. They viewed her as a “defunct institution”, someone who served a purpose at one time but had outlived her usefulness aside from gossip and speculation (Heller). She, along with her house, refuses to move forward and remained frozen in the past. It becomes a tug of war between the generations.
As the tensions escalate between the town and Emily’s way of life, the differences between her and the town become more apparent. Images of death and the past appear in the same scenes with Emily and her life. Even her correspondence is reminiscent of the distant past when the town received a reply from her on “paper of archaic shape, in thin, flowing calligraphy in faded ink” (Faulkner).
Her home is kept in the shadows of a time that is more. Visitors do not see bright rooms and hallways. Instead they only see shadows and seeing how the house “smelled of dust and disuse”(Faulkner). The furniture was old and beat up and showed no use. Her entire being was encased in a time that no one in the town could connect to.
After a span of time withdrawing into her home, Emily reaches out to the town and attempts to connect to the ones who were coming up in the ranks by offering classes on how to paint china in her home. When the “newer generation became the backbone and the spirit of the town”, Emily lost her students who were no longer interested in what she had to offer (Faulkner). This led her to close her door on the world that she could not find a home in and was not accepted as she was.
With the final attempt to be a part of a world that rejected her, she refused to even do the simple things that the new world required of her including putting postal numbers on her house. She closed up parts of the house and presented the town of picture of stubbornness and a reminder of a time long ago that they could not relate to.
It is only upon her death that Emily fades into the past where she belonged. She is buried among those that were part of history. It is also upon her death that the town discovers how far in the past she had buried herself. The body of her lover who had been assumed to have deserted her was found in the upper floors that had been enclosed as in a tomb. She essentially enclosed herself into a tomb along with the lover she poisoned.
Emily refuses to let go of the past where was happiest and more comfortable. She kept the house as it had been for decades. She refused to let her lover leave her and kept him through death in a tomb she created just for him and her. She rejected the world even though she reached out a few times and felt the pain of rejection. She was a relic of the past who formed the past in the present to find some peace in her soul. The tomb becomes her own as she takes her place beside the body of Homer. The past cannot be severed.
Just by reading the story and letting the words take the reader the tomb of Emily’s life, the New Critical approach does not need excessive research. It allows the words to expose the depths of the story instead of the reader having to put in extra energy. The work is done by Fualkner’s pen as Emily’s life is woven to reveal the darkness of her past.
The following entry presents criticism of Faulkner's short story “A Rose for Emily”(1931). See also "The Bear" Criticism. INTRODUCTION
“A Rose for Emily” is one of Faulkner's most anthologized stories. Drawing on the tradition of Gothic literature in America, particularly Southern Gothic, the story uses grotesque imagery and first-person-plural narration to explore a culture unable to cope with its own death and decay. Plot and Major Characters
“A Rose for Emily” begins with the announcement of the death of Miss Emily Grierson, an alienated spinster living in the South in the late nineteenth or early twentieth century. The narrator, who speaks in the “we” voice and appears to represent the people of the town, recounts the story of Emily's life as a lonely and impoverished woman left penniless by her father, who drove away suitors from his overprotected daughter. Emily was left when her father died with a large, dilapidated house, into which the townspeople have never been invited, and there is an almost lurid interest among them when they are finally able to enter the house upon Emily's death. At that point they discover the truth about the extent of Emily's problems: she has kept the body of her lover, a Northerner named Homer Barron, locked in a bedroom since she killed him years before, and she has continued to sleep with him. Major Themes
A variety of themes have been attributed to “A Rose for Emily.” Many critics have focused on Emily's attempts to stop time by confusing past and present and refusing to accept change; similarly, the muddled chronology of events in the story has been a subject of great debate. Both issues have been interpreted as symbolic of the American South's inability to move forward along with the industrialized North after the Civil War. Another analysis finds Emily to be a tragic figure because of her staunch individualism and the probing and judgmental speculations of the townspeople. Still other critics trace the story's significance to Gothic and horror literature going back to Edgar Allan Poe. Critical Reception
Although “A Rose for Emily” is one of Faulkner's best-known stories, it has not generally been considered his greatest achievement in short fiction. In fact, some critics initially accused Faulkner of writing a shallow and exploitative horror story. More recently, however, some critics have questioned the traditionally accepted interpretations of the story, focusing in particular on the role of the unnamed narrator in the story and on the metaphoric rape of Emily through the posthumous invasion of her house.
نصيحة الك وعن تجربة .......حاليا سيبيكي من القواعد ومن الفونتكس ومن الادب .....اهم شئ حاليا حاولي تقوي نفسك بالمحادثة واستخدام اللغة بطلاقة وما راح احكيلك خدي دورات ....المعروف انه اللي بده يحكي منيح بالانجلش بده بالاول يسمع انجلش .....وانتي ببيتك مرتاحة افتحي على مواقع الاستماع راح تسمعي وتحلي اسئلة ولكل المستويات حسب انتي شو بدك ......وراح تستفيدي كتير من هاي المواقع بالتعرف على مصطلحات عمرك ما راح تاخديها بجامعة ولكن مهمة كمان للتحدث .....وراح اكتبلك رابط ممكن من خلاله تشاركي بجروبات شات مع ناس من حول العالم في كل المواضيع والاحلى انه موقع مجاني .......دايما وانتي لحالك حاولي انك تتطلعي حواليكي وتحكي بالانجلش في قرارة عقلك عن هادا الشئ يعني من الاخر تخيلي انك بتحكي مع حدا ( المهم اوعي الموضوع يزيد عن حده بلاش يفكروكي بالبيت صارلك شي ) واللي بيحط براسه هدف اكيد راح يعمله ....والانجلش لغة سهلة وروعة ولو كنتي طليقة فيها راح يفيدك وانتي كمان راح تحسي بمتعة غير شكل