"An Eyesore among Eyesores" : The Significance of Physical Setting in Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily"

Sura M. Khrais


It is the purpose of this paper to study the significance of the physical setting of Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily". The two main geographical settings are Jefferson Town and the Grierson's house . The researcher will show how Faulkner's treatment of the details of the house (the microcosmic geographical settings) which include the upstairs bridal chamber, the crayon portrait, the front door, and window frame leads to a better understanding of Miss Emily's motivations and actions, and gives us insight to her lonely isolated life. At a certain point, Emily's decaying smelly house is refuge from the modernised outside world to which she does not belong. Furthermore, the house is the source of Miss Emily's power. Inside the walls of the  house, she is a strong woman, a killer; yet a woman falling in love. Nevertheless, Faulkner presents another horrifying image of Emily's house. It harbours death and decay. In this sense, the house is closer to dark setting we read about in Gothic Romance. On the other hand, the town is the macrocosmic setting. It is a fallen legacy as it becomes a symbol for the fall of the old South which Emily's house still harbours. 


Faulkner, physical setting, , decaying setting, isolation, confinement, Gothic Romance, fallen legacy, physically enclosed space

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7575/aiac.ijalel.v.6n.6p.123


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