We learn, through the course of the story, that Emily and her family are quite old fashioned. When her father was alive, he treated her like an object or a prize to be won, and no one was ever "quite good enough." Thus, Miss Emily turned thirty and was still not married, to the delight of the townspeople who seemed to feel that the Griersons were somewhat uppity. Then, her father died.
Her father had treated her like a possession, and so when he died, leaving her all alone, she became confused and desperate. She refused to admit that he had died for days until, finally, "she broke down, and they buried her father quickly." Had her father not treated her like an object, and instead let her make her own choice of partner, she certainly "wouldn't have turned down all of her chances . . . " Emily could have had the opportunity to fall in love and make real, empowered choices instead of being "thought of . . . as [part of] a tableau."
This treatment by her father warped her and taught her that...
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