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A Rose for Emily


            In Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily," Faulkner tells a story of a Southern belle who has one chance at love; when it doesn't work out, she withdraws from society and dies alone. Emily's psychological repression is not subject to her unfortunate love loss, yet a long shadow that Emily's father cast over her entire life, long after his death. As her father's stands poised in the doorway of their home, on one of Jefferson's "select streets," between Emily Grierson and the outside world, with his obsessed social taxonomy, he limits her romantic involvements to an incestuous fixation on him. Mr. Grierson's act of denying Emily a normal romantic and sexual life leads to her insanity, and corrupts her ability to distinguish the difference between and life and death. (Stafford 687).
             As Emily and her father stand at the top of their social class, Mr. Grierson ensures that his daughter is protected from those "beaux" which were not "quite good enough for Miss Emily." He stands in the doorway of their "squarish frame house" "clutching a horsewhip", thus to separate those who are "good enough" from those who are not rendered concrete by the physical boundaries of the house itself. Mr. Grierson's social status fancy limited Emily's interaction with other men, thus resulting in her sexual repression and ultimately to her "pathological case." She has been restrained for so long that when her father dies, Emily desires a lover to replace her father. This displacement allows her to "cling to that which had robbed her, as people will.".
             After Mr. Grierson's demise, "she went out very little" in an attempt to isolate herself from her painful feelings. Therefore, "all the ladies" of Jefferson, displaying their usual custom, came to visit Miss Emily to "offer condolence and aid." "Miss Emily met them at the door, with no trace of grief on her face" and denies that her father is dead. I see this denial of her father's death, as not a deliberate repudiation of the idea or consciously dismissal from the mind, but rather her simply failing to perceive that he is dead.


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