A Rose For Emily

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A Rose for Emily The notion that the advancement of time leads to moral decay is an evident theme in William Faulkner's, A Rose for Emily. Faulkner uses the characters and setting of the short story to emphasize his point. The coexistence of the past and new generation allows for clear comparison of character and moral values. Setting is also implemented to show that moral decay declines with passage of time.

The older generation in A Rose for Emily possessed certain respect and compassion not exhibited by the newer generation. A love for beauty and elegance was also present. Colonel Sartoris, of the older generation, cleared Emily from paying any tax because of the death of her father. Faulkner seems to shows admiration for Colonel Sartoris action when he writes, "Only a man of Colonel Sartoris generation and thought could have invented it." (pg. 557). This act reveals the caring, compassionate nature of the older generation.

The" rising generation", however, did not possess such qualities. Unlike their gentile, compassionate predecessors, the new generation appeared uncaring and cold-hearted. They were unsympathetic to Emily and insisted that she paid her taxes. It became a gossipy town and rumors were spread about the old lady, Emily. One mentionable example of the contradictory nature of the two generations was in part 2. Citizens, presumably, of the new generation were steadfast in requesting that the stench be removed from Emily's home. The Board of Aldermen assembled to discuss the issue. The Board consisted of "three gray beards and one younger man, a member of the rising generation" (pg. 558). The member of the rising generation suggested that they simply ask her to clean her house. He didn't appear to realize that her feelings might get hurt. Judge Stevens retorted, "Will you accuse a...