Identify two antagonists, and note the conflict each provides the protagonist and to the story itself?  

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ask996 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the story, "A Rose for Emily," by William Faulkner, there are several antagonists towards Miss Emily the protagonist. The intitian antagonist would have to be Miss Emily’s father, who was so controlling that he drove any potential suitors away. The image of him in the doorway with the whip and Miss Emily in the background is disturbing in its ambiguity, but it clearly indicates his level control. This unwillingness to let Miss Emily form natural attachements is what lead her to revert to a childlike nature and to live the life of a recluse for so long after her father died. Another antagonist to Miss Emily would be Homer Baron. He was her rather questionable beau, and while he indicated he was not a marrying type of man, he certainly did not make that clear to Miss Emily. He continued to engage in activities that most people of the time would consider courting, and this he should not have done if his intentions were not sincere. This lead to the talk and gossip in town, and with that talk, the only thing Miss Emily had left, her reputation, was destroyed. She could not allow the town’s people to think she had been rejected, and this is what lead her to become a murderess.

monkiram | Student

I also think another antagonist would be society/the townspeople (the narrator). They push her to the point where she feels she has to kill her beau in order to keep her dignity. They make her the talk of the town, the oddball, and she never in her life feels loved. Even her china painting lessons, the townspeople eventually stopped sending their children there and again she was alone. Furthermore, even when she was happy with Homer Barron, they ruined it with their jealous talk disapproval.

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A Rose for Emily

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