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Rose for Emily Essay

When reading the first paragraph of, “We all said, ‘she will kill herself’ “: The Narrator / Detective in Williams Faulkner’s “A Rose For Emily” by Lawrence R. Rodgers, I automatically knew that his essay was going to be about the depiction of the genre in the story A Rose For Emily which he clarified as being “a classical expression of American Gothicism. ” (413). And “the classical detective story”.

While reading this essay I could tell that Rodgers was very confident that Faulkner learned much of his genre writing from the famous author Edgar Allan Poe by stating “he capitalized on Poe’s legacy in novels such as Intruder in the Dust (1948) and Knights Gambit (1949)” Rodgers helps the readers understand how a story is established as a classical detective story by referencing John Cawelti’s test for establishing whether a text follows the classical detective formula.

Rodgers states the three conditions that must be met “1) the story must have a mystery that needs solving; 2) there must be concealed facts that a detective has to explore; and 3) these facts must become clear in the end (132). ” (414) By referencing this evidence it is clear to me that A Rose for Emily follows these rules and therefore is declared a detective story.

After Rodgers stated the conditions of a classical detective story he went on to talk about the understating and pattern the story by saying “its pattern of action is ordered around the basic elements of the popular genre…” (414). By stating this information it helped the audience understand the action in which the order of these scenes take place. During my reading of A Rose for Emily I was confused on who the detective was until Rodger’s said, “Faulkner provides a kind of detective, but with an inventive twist. ” (415).

And it states that the narrator is the detective. In the story A Rose For Emily it takes a long time for the narrator/ detective to solve the crime but it still is solved which makes this story a detective story. As I said, Rodgers agrees with me. He indicates “the very failure of the narrator and the town to “solve” the crime until the murder herself has died indicates much about the true nature of the society in which the murder occurred. ” (418) After reading Rodgers analysis, I definitely think he is right with what he was arguing.

By looking at my title “A Ripe Rose” you can automatically tell I agree because by me saying ripe it sounds like “right”. If it weren’t for Rodgers I would have never decided on what kind of genre the story A Rose For Emily was. I recommend anyone else who has read the story to read this analysis and see for him or her what else A Rose For Emily has to offer. Rodgers goes more in depth and can answer your questions. If I were to grade this analysis I would have to give it an A.


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