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A Rose for Emily

4.05 of 5 stars 4.05  ·  rating details  ·  17,076 ratings  ·  313 reviews
Faulkner’s most famous, most popular, and most anthologized short story, “A Rose for Emily” evokes the terms Southern gothic and grotesque, two types of literature in which the general tone is one of gloom, terror, and understated violence. The story is Faulkner’s best example of these forms because it contains unimaginably dark images: a decaying mansion, a corpse, a murd...more
Unknown Binding, 140 pages
Published January 1st 1970 by Merrill Publishing Company (first published 1930)
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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper LeeThe Sound and the Fury by William FaulknerAs I Lay Dying by William FaulknerIn Cold Blood by Truman CapoteWise Blood by Flannery O'Connor
Best Southern Gothic Literature
12th out of 94 books — 180 voters
The Book Thief by Markus ZusakThe Bad Beginning by Lemony SnicketThe Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark HaddonThe Catcher in the Rye by J.D. SalingerThe Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Unique Narrators
31st out of 228 books — 263 voters

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William Faulkner's A Rose for Emily: The Town as Narrator and Accomplice

This classic Southern gothic story was chosen as a Moderators' Choice for members of On the Southern Literary Trail for October, 2014.

WHEN Miss Emily Grierson died, our whole town went to her funeral: the men through a sort of respectful affection for a fallen monument, the women mostly out of curiosity to see the inside of her house, which no one save an old man-servant--a combined gardener and cook--had seen in at leas
A big reason why I read writers like Faulkner is because of beautiful metaphors like this;

"and the very old men--some in their brushed Confederate uniforms--on the porch and the lawn, talking of Miss Emily as if she had been a contemporary of theirs, believing that they had danced with her and courted her perhaps, confusing time with its mathematical progression, as the old do, to whom all the past is not a diminishing road but, instead, a huge meadow which no winter ever quite touches, divided...more
"A Rose for Emily" was an enjoyable Southern Gothic short story. In a series of flashbacks, the narrator tells the reader about Emily's life. Emily was alone in the world because her father had driven away all her suitors. There were few roles open to women other than being a wife and mother in the early 20th Century. She later meets a Northerner, but "he was not a marrying man," and disappeared. We see the world move on as the reclusive Emily remains stuck in traditional times in a changing Sou...more
I came to know about this book through the song 'In The End' by My Chemical Romance, which is inspired on this book. And I must say, this is the greatest story ever written. While the story is most macabre, for me it also shows the ultimate end of Romance and Love.

I don't want to spoil the story or the amazing plot, so please just read it!
The story, published in 1930, takes place in Faulkner's fictional town Jefferson, Mississippi, and begins with the main character Emily Grierson's funeral, and flashbacks of her life, narrated by neighbors that never got to know her.

Emily is a member of the Southern aristocracy. After the Civil War, the family continues to live as before, ignoring the hardship and that the house is falling apart. They deny that they are anything else than aristocracy, and Emily turns down proposals because of t...more
"A ROSE FOR EMILY" is my first experience with Faulkner, and it was quite a beginning! This short story is darkly atmospheric in its descriptive prose of the dusty, smelly and decaying old mansion in which Emily lives in seclusion, and high on the "ICK" factor by the shocking conclusion.

Poor lonely Emily though.....I felt so sorry for her having a mean old father who turns away all her suitors.....but eventually.....Emily does find.....(view spoiler)

Shayantani Das
Who said graphic imagery is required to make a person shudder? William Faulkner, with this subtle southern gothic story will make your jaw drop in horror at the climax. This excellent short story will leave a long lasting impression on your mind, and so will the enigmatic Emily. Recommended!
Another short story required for school. You'd think I would hate this simply because I was forced to read this and maybe at first I was, but who can resist a good mystery?

This story is set, if memory serves me right, in Jefferson, after the first world war. So, historical buffs out there...

Emily Grierson. I think it will be nearly impossible for me to forget her name. It brings a chill to my spine. Even though she was "flat", I didn't hate her for it. Although I can't say she's very much sane....more
I completely forgot that I had read this short story a very long time ago, probably back in high school as an English assignment. I also forgot how much I really liked this short story.

A Rose for Emily is probably one of the most macabre stories I have read from William Faulkner. It is really short and from the beginning lines it really is not clear what direction the story is going to go in, but the more you read the more apparent it is where Faulkner decided to go with it. I can honestly say t...more
Davonna Juroe
Move over Glenn Close, Miss Emily Grierson just showed you up!

This is disturbing gothic necrophilia of the first order, and I did NOT see the last line of this story coming. How unsettling.

Faulkner really delves into the more murky, psychological side of the gothic here instead of relying on its traditional set pieces (endangered young heroine, decaying castles, etc.).

Emily really channels a darker Miss Havisham from GREAT EXPECTATIONS. And like Miss Havisham, Emily is obsessed with holding onto...more
A Rose for Emily is about a lady named Emily who has lived in a building for many years now without having to pay for rent or anything. That's because she had a deal with the old town mayor to not pay rent since she couldn't afford it. When new people took over they started asking her for rent. This really upset her, and she went into a fit. She started hiding from society and didn't do anything. She then met a man that she really loved. She kept him to herself all the time. When her father die...more
Victoria Evangelina Belyavskaya


Doubtless we all have our own "dark spots" in history, but Miss Emily was 'da gal. I shuddered with horror at the end of this necrophilia story and the way old view reversed itself in the new view: all the respect and tolerance the city people showed to Miss Emily... in comparison with what they discovered about her in the end.

Just as Faulkner himself, I pity her greatly. Mentally unstable, unloved, with lost hope for a better life.


I read this short story onli...more
Emily Logue
“A Rose for Emily” is possibly my favorite short story of all time. It is chilling and intriguing seeing Emily go from sympathetic young woman to a reclusive burden. Faulkner leaves just enough hints to make the reader question Emily, making the story a fun guessing game until the final passage, when her actions become clear. I really love the narration of this story, told by someone unknown, but representing the whole town of Jefferson as they watch Emily, one of the last reminders the town has...more

Taught it twice to different classes, worried each time that the kids wouldn't dig on it.

Happy to report that I was wrong both times, I was pleased and gladdened that it really seemed to go over well and I enjoyed reading the papers (more than expected) that came back.

Also, I thought I was a sharp cookie when the comparison between Emily and Lady Haversham...

Uhhh, actually, not so much. A couple freshmen made the connection without me even bringing it up.

Good on them, though. Very happy to...more
sahar salman
The story begins at the most interesting funeral at Jefferson town. The funeral of Miss Emily Grierson, no one saw her from a long time, and nobody had been in her house in ten years, except her servant, Tobe. Although, she had a distinctive relationship between her, and the people in her town, they were always interesting about her life, and always pity her, or dislike her!

Miss Emily had a difficult life after her father’s death, she is a motherless child.
So, when her father died she refused t...more
Elnaz Izadyar
Homer Barren another character of the story whom if we consider as a symbol of modernism , we can say that modernism is killed by Emily, a symbol of traditionalism. The death of Emily and Homer both is shown in the story which to me means the ever-lasting fight between traditions and modernity leading nowhere but destruction of the society. We should try to have them both in hand and mix them up to a comprehensible and advantageous new way and use that as a method of our everyday life.
Sepideh Nakisafar
تقابل سنت و مدرنیته...
امیلی،از خانواده ای اصیل زاده،سنتی و مغرور است.اگر هومر را نماد مدرنیته بدانیم؛ آنچه رخ میدهد کشته شدن مدرنیسم توسط سنتگرایان ست.جایی که امیلی توان تغییر و تطبیق خود با معیارهای امروزی هومررا نداشت، با کشتنش او را تبدیل به جسدی سرد چون نیاکانش کرده و در کنار جسد وی زندگی را میگذراند.. در حقیقت میتوان گفت هومر را با معیارهای خود تطبیق میدهد..
در این داستان هم امیلی و هم هومر دارای نقاط ضعفی بوده و هیج یک کامل نیستند و در نهایت هردو میمیرند،هم سنت و هم تجدد
I had completely forgotten how much of a sense of humor Faulkner has. The first/titular story is super Southern gothic, but somehow doesn’t feel contrived because of the way he foreshadows. (Augh, it’s just so great.)

I also noticed that he writes a lot more about race (i.e. black/white tension in the south) than I had realized, but my favorite parts were the ones where he touches upon aging and the pressures of southern society.

Barn Burning and An Order of Verbena were my favorite of the lot be...more
You seem to have some free time at hand. You log on GR and see that someone has posted this short story by an author you have heard a lot about, but haven't read. You read the review and like the premise. You find an online copy. Time freezes for a while. Best thing about GR.

As for Mr. Faulkner, I am going to visit you very soon. I don't know if you will see me at the door, or like the acrid smell that pervades Emily's house, you will grab hold of my senses. But, I will visit you soon. For readi...more
Tre ritratti al femminile in questo intenso libro di William Faulkner che prende il titolo del più famoso dei racconti-ritratti che lo compongono, quello intitolato, appunto, "Una rosa per Emily". Gli altri due racconti che compongono questo magnifico trittico sono "Miss Zilphia Gant", che apre la raccolta e, a concludere il trittico, il racconto "Adolescenza". Nel primo racconto le protagoniste sono Mrs. Gant e la figlia Zilphia che, da quando il padre di Zilphia se ne va abbandonando moglie e...more
Joseph Wells
Emily father through her life kept her close to him, and would not let her date people. So she becomes a home body, and just stays in her house because of her father control. One day her father dies, and because of her sadness she would not tell any one that he was dead. His rotting corps then skins up the house so bad it could be smelled from the out side. People then fined out what happened and that the dead body... This makes her even more crazy. The book then has a gorse terrible unethical
Lisa Dee
A memorable story about repression and social construction. I can't help thinking that it would be an interesting literary exercise to write Miss Emily's and to provide her point of view of everything that happens in the story. I view her as a woman who ultimately gets what she desires - so in a strange way, she is triumphant.
A creepy gothic chiller about the life of a spinster who makes Miss Havisham look stable. The perfect example of a story I admire but couldn't like, enjoy or engage with on any level. All the elements of successful gothic fiction are lined up in a row -- eerie small town, past setting, lonely spinster, small town folk with a don't-ask-don't-tell mentality, arsenic. And Faulkner carries them off well, but the distance from any kind of characters, as evidenced by the third-person narrative, was cr...more
I wasn't sure what to think when I saw this was written by Faulkner as I only know him fromThe Sound and the Fury, and I didn't even come close to understanding that in high school. This short story is creepy at it's best, it ranks up there with Poe. I read this not really knowing where this story was going. It's written in a way that has you making assumptions all along and I didn't see the end coming. Quite a good short story.
I just finished this story and I actually quite liked it. I have to say however that I expected more from it. It was not as good as I thought it would be, so that was a disappointment.

I liked the feeling of mystery that I got and I definitely wanted to know what would happen with every passing paragraph, but it just didn't tell me everything I had hoped to find out. I think this is purely because of the narrator. He or she doesn't know what really happened, so he/she couldn't really say what wa...more
One of my favorite Faulkner short stories.
Oct 19, 2014 Steph rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone looking for a quick, yet still interesting, read.
I really liked his writing style!
A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner
Fabulous story

This is a beautiful story, with no need for a spoiler alert…here’s the proof:
“When Miss Emily Grierson died, our whole town went to her funeral: the men through a sort of respectful affection for a fallen monument, the women mostly out of curiosity to see the inside of her house, which no one save an old man-servant—a combined gardener and cook—had seen in at least ten years….”
This is how the story starts, and you know from the beginning what hap...more

No tengo palabras para describir este libro aun estoy muy shokeada. Me encantó, pero simplemente no se que decir aun no puedo creer como termino aunque me lo esperaba.
Frase que me marco: (view spoiler) esta frase es muy clave para los que leen esta historia
Final: (view spoiler)...more
Radwa Mahmoud
#My_first_English_review *feeling exciting*

I think it's my first story to finish it completly without preparing
myself with Arabich edition.
I had to read it as a homework and i found that it was recommended alot so i decided to read it today... actually i felt that i'm lost almost to third chapter, i didn't recognize why they reommend this? i was about to sleep very angry of it but then i insisted to finish it today ... gradually i felt fear and at the end i felt disgust .. I think the reason wh...more
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William Cuthbert Faulkner was a Nobel Prize-winning American novelist and short story writer. One of the most influential writers of the twentieth century, his reputation is based mostly on his novels, novellas, and short stories. He was also a published poet and an occasional screenwriter.
The majority of his works are based in his native state of Mississippi. Though his work was published as earl...more
More about William Faulkner...
The Sound and the Fury As I Lay Dying Light in August Absalom, Absalom! Go Down, Moses

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“For a long while we just stood there, looking down at the profound and fleshless grin. The body had apparently once lain in the attitude of an embrace, but now the long sleep that outlasts love, that conquers even the
grimace of love, had cuckolded him. What was left of him, rotted beneath what was left of the nightshirt, had become inextricable from the bed in which he lay; and upon him and upon the pillow beside him lay that even coating of the patient and biding dust.
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-grey hair.”
“They held the funeral on the second day, with the town coming to look at Miss Emily beneath a mass of bought flowers with the crayon face of her father musing profoundly above the bier and the ladies sibilant and macabre; and the very old men - some in their brushed Confederate uniforms - on the porch and the lawn, talking of Miss Emily as if she had been a contemporary of theirs, believing that they had danced with her and courted her perhaps, confusing time with its mathematical progression, as the old do, to whom all the past is not a diminishing road but, instead, a huge meadow which no winter ever quite touches, divided from them now by the narrow bottle-neck of the most recent decade of years.” 9 likes
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