How Is A Rose For Emily Feminist Criticism

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“A Rose for Emily” through the Lens of Feminist Literary Criticism
A Rose for Emily is a short story written by William Faulkner. Its plot focuses on Emily Grierson, a representative of the family of previously rich Southern aristocrats. The woman obviously had inherited mental problems, which resulted in the murder of Homer Barron, Emily’s first and only mentioned potential bridegroom. After the crime she turned into a complete anchoret and spent many decades in the house with Barron’s body. There were many factors that contributed to the tragic fate of Emily Grierson. Besides obvious class-specific and psychiatric issues, the list includes the perception of gender roles in the society of the time. Women played second fiddle despite their
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The man chose a partner for his daughter by himself, and his censoriousness made her an old spinster, as “she got to be thirty and was still single” (Faulkner 4). The situation could change after the father’s death, but it did not happen because of combination of social factors. People believed they should feel pity for a woman, who has never been married in her thirties. This approach for commiseration deprived Emily from last opportunities to find a partner among citizens. The woman, who was behaved as a member of the high society, could not to stomach people’s readiness for the “joyous pity”. Citizens believed Grierson should become someone’s wife, like every woman, and destroyed her chances for marriage at the same…show more content…
Faulkner cannot be criticized for the creation of a bad vision of women in the case of Emily Grierson. The character was a victim of circumstances, where the gender issue was only one of several factors. But it played its role in tragic events. From the lens of feminist theory, the major problem of the story was the fact people believed women cannot deal with their problems (even personal) by themselves. As Faulkner focused on Miss Emily, it is hard to claim, if this attitude was limited by female representatives of noble families. But it is possible to suggest women of all social classes were closely watched by moral crusaders. Forcing women to follow customs, like marrying before thirty, they simultaneously disrupted their attempts by additional requirements. It could be the social status, like in the case of Miss Emily, or any other feature. But the result was the same: the community felt sorry for woman, who could not satisfy its requirements, despite the fact the society made it impossible or too difficult by itself. Miss Emily’s actions were extreme, but they reflected a strong pressure a woman could feel in such
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