Are the characters in "A Rose for Emily" motivated in the same ways to pay her tribute after her death?

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pmiranda2857 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Some members of the town are curious about Miss Emily and the way she lived locked up in her house all alone for so many years.  While others, pay respect to her memory as an inconic representation of what was the old south.

"Until the very day of Miss Emily’s death, despite the many generations that have come and gone in the town, the town members continue to act decorously with respect to the rites of death. At Miss Emily’s death, just as they had done at her father’s, the town’s “ladies” call on the house. Tobe’s immediate departure, never to be “seen again,” offers yet another ominous hint of things yet to transpire."

jeff-hauge eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The collective "we" narrator in the story is experimental and gives a nuanced sense of the conflict between individual v. society. The town-as-narrator judges her life, owns the legacy of her memory and even passes judgement on the appropriate nature of her presumed suicide. Faulkner is making a strong point regarding the power of society is shaping the lives of its members. While Emily's fall is perverse it receives impetus from the town's instigation. The "Rose" in the story is the legacy the town has shaped in her death. It is what lies behind the symbolic rose placed on the coffin of the departed figure.