Essays on A Rose For Emily

A Rose For Emily
Original title A Rose For Emily
Author William Faulkner
Language English
Characters Emily, Homer, Tobe, Judge Stevens, Colonel Sartoris, the townspeople
Published April 30, 1930
ISBN 0-7432-6483-5
Book Summary
Essay Examples

Table of Contents

About A Rose for Emily Book:

William Faulkner wrote A Rose for Emily back in 1930. The book was published in the Forum. The short story was one of his major works. The short story is republished with a slight alteration. The story revolves around a strange girl named Emily Grierson.

In the story, we meet with an anonymous narrator who sheds light on the life of Emily Grierson and her peculiar relationship with her father and love interest, Homer Barron. The story ends with a frightening note in the readers’ minds. 

Even the writer calls it a ‘Ghost Story’; hence it is classed in gothic horror. Some of the characters from the story are inspired by the author’s own family; for instance, Colonel Sartoris is inspired by his grandfather. The character of Emily Grierson somehow resonates with the writer from his personal life. He surely was aware of the idea of eccentricity, which could be seen in Emily’s character.

Book Summary:

The A Rose for Emily summary is an incredible way to have an overview of the story. You also get an introduction to the different characters of the story. Here is the summary of A Rose for Emily.

The short story is sectioned into five parts. The first section opens with an unknown narrator counting on Emily’s demise and her funeral procession. He mentions the townspeople’s regard for her. Emily Grierson’s home is situated in a graceful neighborhood, but it all derailed because she has not paid the taxes.

As per the former mayor, before passing away, her father donated a huge sum to the community. Hence, she is exempted from paying the tax as new mayors replace the old ones. They all try to make her pay them but fail; even the members of the Board of Alderman do not make her pay them.

In the second section, Emily is investigated for the foul stench that reeks near her home. We further learn that Emily, by this time, is alone in her home, that her fiancé has abandoned her, and that her father has passed. Judge Steven orders to drizzle lime water to fight the odor at nighttime, so Emily is unaware.

The townspeople pity her because they think she is isolated, like her aunt, who has lost her sanity. Most people perceive the Grierson family as arrogant and that it is the reason behind Emily’s loneliness. And not being able to find a suitable match for herself.

Something more is revealed in this section when the narrator uncovers the time when Emily’s father had passed away and how she refuses to accept it and three days postmortem and later surrenders her father’s body for burial.

In the third section, following her father’s death, she doesn’t feel well and stays ill for a lengthy period. During this time, she builds a relationship with Homer Barron. Although she does not remain a social recluse, people sympathize with her.

Over time her reputation is harmed because of her relationship with Homer Barron. She purchases arsenic, but we are not revealed how she will bring it to use. People feel that Emily will use the poison to commit suicide as the chances of her marriage with Homer seem thin.

The townspeople talk to the mayor to have a word with Emily, but something makes him refuse the suggestion. Her cousin comes to the town after the mayor’s wife requests them to stay for a long period.

It feels as though Homer and Emily will be getting married. People think Homer is out planning his wedding as he has been missing for a while. Emily’s cousins leave, and Homer returns to be never seen again. Even Emily is not seen afterward. By this time, she is not only old but plump too, and she rarely talks to anyone, and she passes away.

In the final section, the narrator reveals that after Emily’s demise, her home is opened for the funeral procession, and it appears that her long-time love interest Homer Barron’s carcass is on the bed in a room with their wedding objects. It seems that Emily had slept with the body as the pillow next to him was sunken and had strands of grey hair.

A Rose for Emily Quotes:

The following are the notable quotes from the story: 

  1. “Then we noticed that in the second pillow was the indentation of a head. One of us lifted something from it, and leaning forward, that faint and invisible dust dry and acrid in the nostrils, we saw a long strand of iron-gray hair.”
  2. “Colonel Sartoris invented an involved tale to the effect that Miss Emily’s father had loaned money to the town, which the town, as a matter of business, preferred this way of repaying.”
  3. “With nothing left, she would … cling to that which had robbed her, as people will.”
  4. “Alive, Miss Emily had been a tradition, a duty, and a care; a sort of hereditary obligation upon the town . . .”
  5. “She told them that her father was not dead. She did that for three days, with the ministers calling on her and the doctors, trying to persuade her to let them dispose of the body.”

Essay Structure On A Rose For Emily:

It is a short story about a girl and her eccentricity. We will be doing great justice to get an idea about structuring an essay on any topic we get. Now to write an essay, it is important to understand its structure or what we call its format.

An essay has the following three parts, namely:


You can never start working in a new place without introducing yourself. Likewise, if your readers are not introduced to the topic on which you write an essay. Chances are that they don’t understand and get confused. So, the introduction part is very important.

Keep in mind that an introduction begins with a hook that will cling the reader to read further, and then it is followed by the thesis statement. A thesis statement will give the reader an idea about the entire essay. It shows your standpoint or your opinion/judgment about the topic.


After a fine introduction, you would be expected to justify your thesis statement, and an A Rose For Emily analysis can help you greatly. And all that is done in this section of the essay. It is important to remember that the essay’s body is written in the form of paragraphs.

Each paragraph must address only one topic. The paragraph must have a topic sentence and be supported by relevant details that justify the topic. The supporting detail could be textual evidence, some quotations, scholars’ comments, or some critique.


The final part of your essay is called the conclusion, in which you will be expected to summarize all the points you have addressed in the essay without missing anything. A conclusion is complimentary for finishing your essay.

There is no need to add new information in the conclusion because it will puzzle the reader. An easy way to craft a conclusion is to revise the essay and restate the thesis statement followed by the main points of your essay.

6 Tips to Consider while writing an Essay About A Rose for Emily:

Writing an essay was never difficult, but what makes an essay effective? Read below to get the tips you must know while writing your essay.

Read the Book Thoroughly

It is a smart approach to writing essays. It would be best if you read the text beforehand. You must know the idea about the plot, its characters, its climax, and its resolution; only then will you be able to write your essay effectively because you will have a grip on the topic.

Find a Compelling Topic

What makes a topic compelling? To write a compelling topic, a few things to keep in mind are choosing a thesis statement that you can elaborate on at a great length without getting confused midway. Next, consider narrowing your topic down to a specific topic if you think it is too vast. And lastly, make sure your topic has something novel to develop the readers’ interest.

Create the Outline 

An outline of your essay is its blueprint. Without an outline, your essay will not stand on a strong foundation. The key to writing effective essays is in their logically sequenced ideas. An outline could be made by following brainstorming and clustering techniques.

Write a Thesis Statement:

A thesis statement is one of the most important elements in the introduction of your essay. It enlightens the readers on your standpoint. It gives them an idea about the theme of the essay and how you will carry on your research-based essay.

Without a thesis statement, your essay will lose its impact. If you don’t know how to write a thesis statement, A Rose For Emily theme can help you!

Include A Moral Or A Lesson:

Adding a moral or a lesson to the essay will greatly impact the readers’ minds. It will allow them to self-introspect and provide them with food for thought. But, it will also work on improving their lives better.

Conclusion: Proofread Your Work:

After finishing your work, it is very important to proofread your essay. Proofreading your work will allow you to revise your draft and improve typos, grammatical errors, etc. Always remember that whenever you are asked to write an essay, you shall never feel troubled because we will make that easy for you. Leave it to us, and we will provide you most amazing essays much faster.

Frequently Asked Questions

    I.          What Is The Main Message Of A Rose For Emily?

The main idea behind A Rose for Emily is the relevance of change and death as Emily is not bothered by death as much as how she reacts to change.

  II.          What Is Emily’s Mental Illness In A Rose For Emily?

In the Story, Emily shows symptoms of Schizophrenia as she isolates herself from the rest of society and acts obnoxiously towards the people after the death of her loved ones.

   III.          What Happened In A Rose For Emily?

At the end of the story, Emily’s home is opened for her funeral procession. After that, the readers are revealed that the missing person – her lover had died, and his body was in the bed where she had slept with it.

   IV.          Why Did Emily Not Marry Homer In A Rose For Emily?

Although Emily’s marriage seems a disgrace, it provides an opportunity for Emily to play as a wife freely. Homer denied marrying Emily, and she did not accept that. As a result, Emily killed Homer.

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FAQ about A Rose For Emily

Why Emily Grierson Isn’t Just a Senseless Killer
...Overall Ms.Grierson's snapping and killing Homer Barron was due to the fact that she suffered from a genetic mental disorder passed down from her great aunt that and the old southern values and traditions that Ms.Greisons was expected to uphold lead...
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