Symbolism in “A Rose for Emily”
A symbol is a person, an object, or an event that suggests more than its literal meaning. (270) In “A Rose for Emily”, William Faulkner uses symbolism throughout the short story to compare many aspects of Miss Emily’s’ house to that of Miss Emily Grierson. The symbolism of the house occurs during the whole story. William Faulkner uses the house to compare it to Miss Emily’s physical appearance. The house was once youthful and attractive like Miss Emily and then it begins to deteriorate just as she does. Miss Emily’s social standing in the community is also symbolized by her house. Just like her house was looked upon with pity she was also. And last Miss Emily’s unwillingness to change according to the times is too symbolized by the house.
Symbolism with Miss Emily Griersons house first occurs at the beginning of the story when William Faulkner said the house “had once been white, decorated with cupolas and spires and scrolled balconies” (95). The description of the house is used to symbolize Miss Emily’s physical characteristics. Like the appearance of how the house once was Miss Emily’s physical appearance was once youthful and attractive. As the years went by the house began to age becoming “an eyesore of eyesores” (95) just as Miss Emily’s appearance after the years made her unattractive. Faulkner described her as “a small, fat woman in black” (96) and “her eyes, lost in the fatty ridges of her face”. (96) The physical appearances of the house to Miss Emily are only one of the uses symbolism of the house in the short story.
Miss Emily’s social standing in the town was also symbolized by her house. In the second paragraph Miss Emily’s house was described as “big, squarish framed house…set on what had once been our most select street.”(95) The house was extravagant, big, and detailed. Since it was placed on a select street someone who owned this house had money and power. This symbolizes how Miss...