The Office Short Story

1345 Words6 Pages
Good writers, who write masterpieces, wisely use “the elements of the short story” to engage readers. Character, setting, plot, conflict, theme, and other elements are practically used to create climax, bring up questions, form suspense or mystery, and make the story captivating. “The Office” by Alice Munro and “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner are epitomes of greatly written short stories due to perfect usage of “the elements of the short story.” Both authors use setting, character, and point of view to show the women’s jealousy and anger towards men due to social constraints and beliefs. Setting is the key element in these short stories because two authors deal with the same problem in the similar era. “The Office” is written in 1968…show more content…
When the story is written in a first-person plural point of view, it provides a wide range of viewing the situation but cannot get detailed thoughts or feeling of the characters. We know how townspeople talk about Miss Emily and also Miss Emily’s situation like social belief. For instance, Homer and Miss Emily had a difficult time because townspeople say Homer is not the right guy for Miss Emily. The class difference was important around 1930s for marriage. However, we cannot figure out what each character is thinking other than from the dialogue. Townspeople talk about their feelings about Miss Emily; therefore readers can get a grasp of Miss Emily and her family’s reputation, but we don’t know what Miss Emily is thinking about others and society’s ideal of marriage. Emotion is less observed in first-person plural point of view…show more content…
The unnamed narrator from “the Office” and Emily from “a Rose for Emily” react differently to the same problem. Both characters suffer from the social belief and people around them, trying to take control over their lives. For instance, “Emily’s life is shaped by her father’s absolute control over her; her murder of Homer Barron is reaction, not action” (Feminisms: An Anthology of Literary Theory and Criticism). This quote shows Miss Emily’s insanity, resulting in murder, is caused from social expectation and suppression from townspeople and her dad. On the contrary, the narrator of “the Office” reacted to her limitation due to her gender by getting her own office outside of the house. Additionally, another problem pops up between the narrator and Mr. Malley when Mr. Malley accuses the narrator for the lipstick in the washroom. She is furious of Mr. Malley and says, “I really wanted to murder him” (Munro). However, she does not kill him and just leaves the office. These two characters both react to the problems but in different ways. One ends up killing someone without expressing anger but the other just leaves without killing anyone but expresses her anger. These different reactions of characters end the stories in different
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