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Character Analysis of Emily Grierson in A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner

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“Here was a woman who has had a tragedy, a tragedy and nothing could be done about it, and I pitied her and this was a salute ... to a woman you would hand a rose” (Outón 63), this is how William Faulkner is quoted when explaining the meaning for the title of his short story, “A Rose for Emily.” In his short story, Faulkner summarizes the life of a forsaken woman, whom, while heavily respected by her town, is also quite pitied. Faulkner works to give the reader a sense of empathy towards his character while he describes the tragedy that is her life. Emily Grierson, is eventually found to not be the only victim of the story, though, as her faults are exposed. In spite of her disturbing tendencies, William Faulkner still manages to depict his character, Emily Grierson, as a lonely and reclusive woman whom the reader wishes to feel sorry for. Emily Grierson is introduced to the reader as a lonely old lady who simply needs a friend. Her lack of social interaction is demonstrated throughout the story as the only two companions that she is ever mentioned to having had are her father, who died, and a suitor, Homer Barron, who left her many years ago. The reader is left feeling even more sorry for Emily when the narrator tells of her possible suicide endeavor when she goes to buy poison from the town druggist, “’I want some poison… I want the best you have. I don’t care what kind’” (Faulkner 99). The narrator leaves the reader supposing that Emily had wished to end her life. The
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