Imagery In A Rose For Emily

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Aubrey Binder's “Uncovering the Past: The Role of Dust Imagery in a 'Rose For Emily'” explains that the motifs of dust and decay are very important and prominent in Faulkner's story. Binders arguments for the motifs are strong, especially for the motif of dust. However, her article provides very little literary evidence for the motif of decay. While I agree with Binder’s motif of dust, I don’t agree with her arguments for the motif of decay, and I believe that the motif of pity would better fit the text. Binder’s motif of dust is heavily supported in the text, she believes that the dust covering the objects and people in Emily’s home represents the obscuring of past events. She makes it very apparent that the dust does not change or erode the past, it simply hides it. The dust provides ambiguity, which helps to keep the townspeople clueless about what's really going on inside Emily’s home. To support this statement, Binder points out that Homer Barron's body was covered in an, “even coating of the patient and biding dust.” This quote exemplifies how the dust really conceals parts of Emily’s life from the townspeople. When the townspeople found Homer’s body,…show more content…
Binder states that, “The reader finds descriptions of decay in the slow degrading of the town, Emily’s inherited home, and even in the ageing Emily herself.” After she describes how decay could be a motif, she then goes on to explain the motif of dust, but then never revisits decay. The rest of Binder’s review is about how dust affected “A Rose for Emily.” Binder makes the very common literary mistake of not providing enough evidence from the text. Binder jumps to the conclusion that because Miss Emily and her house seem to be decaying it means that it's a major motif for this story. When really, the decay is more of a descriptor about the setting and Miss Emily herself rather than a
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