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A Rose for Emily - Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover

Essay by   •  November 30, 2016  •  Essay  •  1,068 Words (5 Pages)  •  849 Views

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In many societies these days are all about social status and appearances.  They can go as far as to who they should befriend based on appearance and social status. The better you look, the higher your chances of making friends and keeping up your image in front of people and being accepted into most social groups and circles. It’s not much different in the older times. In fact they probably had it worse. But have you ever wondered what kind of effects might have on those individuals who try hard to keep a good social appearance and be accepted into a society of high standard? Social pressure on those type of individuals have a great negative effect that outweighs the positive effect on such individuals, and so Faulkner and Lawrence share the same views of the effects from social pressure on individuals by pointing out how in both short stories a person can lose most of their humanity and alter the way they live, think and perceive the world. By observing their ways of life and how they look and view the world, it won’t be surprising to know how the two stories end.

    “A Rose for Emily” where Faulkner portraits the protagonist as a standing monument where her appearance looks strong and at the same time irritating. Always trying to force her ways of living onto everyone else.  She was the only daughter of a rich business man who apparently contributed a lot to the city financially to the point where she doesn’t have to pay taxes the city anymore. The way Emily was raised was in a very closed and strict environment which did have an effect on her where she preferred to be alone most of the time and avoid contact with people and making friends. She was always the center of everyone’s attention and talk. The more the attention she was getting, the more pressure was thrown upon her shoulders, the more depressed and closed she would get. With that it resulted in her ending most of her relationships with people and ending her friendships and interaction with society.

    We can also observe from her actions how she likes to take action by herself and make decisions on her own that she is a very controlling person. She gets that trait from her deceased father who, very much like her, loves to have everything under his control, especially his daughter. The way that he had declined a lot of suiters and lovers away from his daughter confirms his controlling desire for everything. This has an everlasting effect on Emily even after his death. And she might have taken it overboard and gone crazier than her father. When homes started to give her attention and affection, she wanted to control that and keep it to herself forever. She wanted his attention and affection for herself only. It only increased when the people around her criticized her for going after a man who apparently had no long term relationship interest in her. They also criticized her for choosing someone who was not in the same social status and wealth wise to level with her.  

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