What higher truth could Miss Emily be serving in "A Rose for Emily"? You might want to consider Miss Emily as an anti-hero, or someone who lacks the attributes that makes a character heroic such...

What higher truth could Miss Emily be serving in "A Rose for Emily"? 

You might want to consider Miss Emily as an anti-hero, or someone who lacks the attributes that makes a character heroic such as nobility of spirit and mind and/or a life or attitude marked by a lack of purpose.  Anti-heroes typically defy or violate social mores in the name of a higher truth that tend to elevate his or her otherwise despicable actions.  What higher truth could Miss Emily be serving?  Please include 2 quotations.

1 Answer | Add Yours

bullgatortail's profile pic

bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I don't really see that Emily is serving any kind of "higher truth" when she murders her lover, Homer Barron, in cold blood. I can suggest several excuses that might be considered, but none of them would be even slightly acceptable in a civilized world.

  • HOMER WAS A YANKEE.  Memories of the Civil War were still alive and well in Jefferson, so it could be argued that Emily chose to avenge Southern womanhood by slaying the Yankee invader who ransacked her chastity and then tried to head North.
  • RAT POISON FOR A RAT.  Emily's murder may have been a symbolic statement, since she chose arsenic for the trap she used to kill the man who deserted her.
  • A PROMISE IS A PROMISE.  We don't even know for sure if Homer ever promised to marry Emily, but if so, Emily may have decided to take the vow of "till death do us part" quite literally.

We’ve answered 318,967 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question