In "A Rose for Emily," how does Faulkner describe Miss Emily in the sixth paragraph?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This description of Emily seems symbolic.  For, Emily has already died in a sense:  She is lost in the world of the Old South.  In funereal clothes with a long gold chain "descending into her waist," suggesting her family line that ends with her, she stands only with the aid of a black cane that has a tarnished gold head on it.  This tarnished gold is symbolic of the once high social and economic prestige that Miss Emily once possessed that she tries to live upon.  But, now her body is pallid and bloated, like one dead.  Her eyes, the "windows to the soul" are lifeless.  They are described as one would describe the eyes children made for snowmen by pressing lumps of coal into the "doughy" head.

ladyvols1 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In this part of the story a "deputation waited upon her,"  "-a small, fat woman in black, with a thin gold chain descending to her waist and vanishing into her belt,, leaning on an ebony cane with a tarnished gold head.  Her skeleton was small and spare; perhaps that was why what would have been merely plumpness in another was obesity in her.  She looked bloated, like a body long submerged in motionless water, and of that pallid hue.  Her eyes, lost in the fatty ridges of her face looked like two small pieces of coal pressed into a lump of dough as they moved from one face to another..."

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A Rose for Emily

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