Examples Of The Narrator In A Rose For Emily

Decent Essays

“A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner is a suspenseful story not only because of its complex chronology and shocking ending, but also because of Faulkner’s unusual use of narrative technique. While the narrator is seen by many as a windows pane or mirror upon Emily’s life, there is more to the narrator than simply being an unnamed speaker or collective town voice. The rather unusual narrative perspective creates suspense and a sense of mystery as to the identity of the unnamed narrator, seemingly representing a collective town voice; furthermore, the narrative perspective significantly influences the characterisation of Emily. In this paper, I am going to focus on the following questions: Who is the narrator? What is his relation to Emily? …show more content…

When first reading it, the narrator comes across as a collective town voice, as he/she speaks for the whole town and tells us the gossip and ideas of the town people. He does so in a very detached way, as he is not commenting on the information he is giving us. However, it is obvious that the narrator is a member of this town, as he is using personal pronouns like ‘we’ and ‘our’. Furthermore, one might get the impression that the narrator is all-knowing because he seems to know many details that he could only know if he either experienced the events himself or is omniscient. For example, on page 121 in the first paragraph, the narrator describes a visit of the Board of Aldermen at Miss Emily’s. When referring to these men, the narrator uses the pronoun ‘they’, rather than ‘we’, as he usually does. This means that he is not one of those men who visit Emily. But his precise knowledge about many details of this meeting leads to the assumption that he must be either all-knowing or – if he is not one of the men of the Board of Aldermen – he is another character present. This could be a first hint to the narrator’s real identity. Except for the men of the Board of Aldermen and Miss Emily, there was only one more person present: Tobe, Miss Emily’s black

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