Use Of Flashback In Faulkner's A Rose For Emily

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Flashback is a popular literary device used by writers. It is defined as an interruption in the present of a vivid moment set in the past, and it can be triggered by anything or anyone a song, an event, a person, a place, and even an object. Authors use it for many reasons. They use it to add background information concerning present events. When they do this, they give the reader more information about a character's past, including secrets, problems, and significant events that may have affected the character's life. This information will allow the reader to understand the character's actions throughout the story and all the reader to develop a better understanding of the character and his actions. A very good example of the use of flashback is found in William Faulkner's short story "A Rose for Emily." Faulkner cleverly uses flashback to convey the idea that the past if forever present. "A Rose for Emily" is set in the South after the Civil War, and it centers on the life of the main character, Emily Grierson, who was born sometime around the Civil War. Her family were aristocrats who associated only with other aristocrats, so they were arrogant and wealthy. Through the years, they had been reduced to common folk, but they maintained their arrogance and the townspeople continued to treat them as though they were still wealthy. There is an unnamed narrator who tells this story…show more content…
Her secret remains a scret until the day of the funeral when her two female cousins and two other gentlemen discover Homer's corpse in a room in her house, and next to the corpse was "a long strand of grey hair," suggesting that Emily was till sleeping next to him in that bed. He had been poisoned forty years prior to them finding his corpse. The awful smell around her house is introduced at the beginning of the story, but its not until the end of the story that the reader learns that smell was actually homer's rotting
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