Theme Of Self V. Society In William Faulkner's A Rose For Emily

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In the story A Rose for Emily, by William Faulkner, the conflict of self v. society is examined and investigated through the main character’s actions and views on whether or not it is acceptable to hold on to a body after the person is deceased. The play is set in the early 1900’s, which would help identify why the inhabitants of the town that Emily lived in were so resistant to her way of thinking. This, However, creates connections and conflicts between the actions that Emily found acceptable and those that were more embraced in the society around her.
The element of visions of reality is visited early and often within A Rose of Emily. For example, in the 9th paragraph of the story Judge Stevens poses the question, “will you accuse a lady to her face of smelling bad?”. We the audience, know that just attempting to cover up the smell isn’t the correct way to deal with the crime that was committed at hand. The real question is, did the Judge know what was the cause of the stench at the moment. Emily herself asks the audience to take off our “rose colored” glasses and look reality in the face. What we come to terms in confronting is the reality of America within the short story, and the actuality of the main character’s entire isolation. Faulkner helps do a good job to show how difficult it can be to evaluate the past and
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This Faulkner novel exhibits how the actions of one individual could turn them from beloved of the town to someone is rarely even heard from. “After her father’s death, she went out very little; after her sweetheart went away, people hardly saw her at all.” This quote provides more proof of what we had already knew, which is that Emily is a very isolated person. Her father had isolated her from men when she was young and the Homer Barron situation had isolated her from everybody within the town except for
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