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Letting Go Essay, Research Paper

Letting Go

Many people hate to let things go. People find security and comfort in their

possessions and the company they keep. If all this is ripped away from a person, it can

have a very negative effect on that person?s life. In Faulkner?s short story, ?A Rose for

Emily,? everything that a person knows is gradually taken away from her gradually

leading to her madness.

Miss Emily, the main character in this short story, is an example of a time that

once was. ?Miss Emily had been a tradition, a duty, and a care; a sort of hereditary

obligation upon the town?(362). Not only is her appearance a symbol of the past but the

place that she called home is also very old fashioned. ?Miss Emily?s house was left, lifting

its stubborn and coquettish decay above the cotton wagons and the gasoline bumps-an

eyesore among eyesores?(362). Miss Emily stays the same while ?the next generation,

with its more prominent ideas?(362) are becoming more visible and established.

Miss Emily not only has a hard time of letting material things go, but she also has a

tough time of letting the people in her life leave her. Miss Emily loves her father very

much, but his death devastates her. It also brings her down to earth. ?Being left alone,

and a pauper, she had become humanized?(364). The death of her father also throws her

into a horrible case of denial. ?She told them [ the ladies ] that her father was not

dead?(364). She told everyone this for three days, and ? just as the [ the people ] were

about to resort to law and force, she broke down and they buried her father quickly?(364).

This is one case of a important person leaving Miss Emily?s life.

Another character that plays a main part in Emily?s life is a man named Homer

Barron. Barron is ?a big, dark, ready man, with a big voice and eyes lighter than his

face?(365). Emily madly in love with this man, eventually to the point where she mentions

marriage to Homer. When this is said to Homer it is said that ?he was not a marrying

man?(366). Once again Emily is destroyed, so destroyed that she takes drastic measures.

She resorts to poisoning Homer, this causes his death. Emily then places Homer in her

bed and proceeds to sleep with him. A severe case of desperation.

Not everyone has this big of a problem of hanging on to things. Most people can

pick up and move on. In Faulkner?s short story ?A Rose for Emily? everything that a

person knows is gradually taken away from her gradually leading to her madness.

Works Cited

Faulkner, William. ?A Rose for Emily? An Introduction to Literature. Ed. Joseph Terry.

NewYork: Longman, 2001, 362-368.

Mike Tunno

Eng 102.12

/928/00

Analytical Essay

Outline

Thesis Statement: In Faulkner?s short story ?A Rose for Emily? everything that a person

knows is gradually taken away from her gradually leading to her madness.

I. Introduction

a. losing things

b. thesis

II. Material

a. appearance

b. house

III. Father

a. loss

b. reaction

IV. Homer Barron

a. loss

b. reaction

V. Closing

a. loss and reaction of people

b. restated thesis

Faulkner, William. ?A Rose for Emily? An Introduction to Literature. Ed. Joseph Terry.

NewYork: Longman, 2001, 362-368.


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