Authors use a variety of methods to convey material, and stylistic devices vary widely. Without a question, the use of symbols is very common in poetry, and the same idea holds true when contrasting compositions in “A Rose for Emily” and “Everyday Use.” Despite the fact that both texts relate to and link distinct points of history, their writers use metaphors to effectively convey a variety of meanings regarding characters, events, and times. Furthermore, its use goes beyond the traditional context of comparing common social problems and significantly aids in theme and character creation.
A Rose for Emily
The tale’s primary theme is that of neglect which one can also term as alienation. This situation is very evident through the way Emily lives her life. As the author describes it, Emily doesn’t have a family or children to associate with, and until the age of seventy-four when she dies, the only person to have a special mention in her life is only her late father. More so, the place that Emily occupies is different from the rest in the community and appears detached from where the others live throughout her life. Although much about her life remains unknown and the reasons for such a life still unclear, one can successfully deduce from the narration that Emily lived a sad and abandoned life since she lived most of her life is in solitude.
Regarding that, the most dominant symbol in this story comes from the title itself. As many use it in many situations, a rose symbolizes love, and this is the missing element in Emily’s story. In fact, it is a legitimate case to deduce that the author uses the title deliberately as a way to connect the reader with the sad situation and as a way to illustrate the missing element to make the tale complete (Cavender and Howard 112). More so, by preserving the body of her late father in the house, Emily shows the extent to which her loss is and the need for comfort and motivation to carry on a dire need. In its complex meaning, further, the use of rose can apply to denote the value of love she accorded her father before death as a way to symbolize the extent of the loss that she is experiencing.
On the other hand, Emily’s house is a case to symbolize alienation, mental illness, and the element of death. By preserving the body of her father in the same room, Emily shows the value of her father’s loss and the irreplaceable loss that she has encountered through the death (Faulkner 77). In its complex meaning, the house’s situation is an illustration of the town’s and its residents’ situation in that they are neglecting one another and the need for bonding essential. More so, the strand of her hair that she uses all through can be a perfect symbol of the reminder of the love lost as well as the great struggles that people go through in their effort to become successful in life.
The use of a rose is essential as it helps to develop the theme of love. It is an indication that a key element is missing highly in the society and the people need to rethink about the way they associate with one another. Also, it helps to develop Emily as a character and the imaginations that a reader has to her. It helps in demonstrating her as a neglected person who is in dire need of value that only the surrounding community can give. On the other hand, the use of a departed and remote home helps in the development of alienation as a theme. As a critical observation all through, the symbol is essential to denote the detachment that is evident in the community that is as well decaying since love as a valuable element is diminishing.
Symbolism in Everyday Use
Everyday Use is a tale that focuses on how people relate and perceive another. It is also a case to illustrate how values and concepts diminish across cultures and how they can change too. After Dee leaves her home, she comes back later and is unable to relate well with her sister Maggie due to change in her customary appearance. On the other hand, it’s hard for her husband to connect well with her mother and even greetings become a complicated scenario. However, the main issue with her new life is changing her name without involving the customs as a way to avoid curses from those who named her.
The central symbol in this story includes the use of quilts. As the author applies them all through, they are a way regarding how the society bonds together and detach too (Martin 216). More so, when one fails to understand and relate with the connections, it shows that they are vulnerable to disconnections and the legacy can also end. In complex meaning, the quilts symbolize people’s history and related attachments that they should strive to protect all the time. It is their heritage, and the value is irreplaceable.
The use of quilts as a symbol is essential in the development of social bonds and people’s history as a theme. In every society, people have elements that they highly regard and every person has an obligation to understand, interpret, and protect them. On the same case, they should help their generations to know and appreciate them. However, if anyone goes against them such as in the case of Dee renaming herself without involving the existing customs, the result is a conflict which is evident in her case with her sister Maggie.
Cavender, Nancy M., and Howard Kahane. Logic and contemporary rhetoric: The use of reason in everyday life. Cengage Learning, 2009.
Faulkner, William, and Noel Polk. A rose for Emily. Harcourt College Publishers, 2000.
Martin, Wendy. The Art of the Short Story: Stories and Authors in Historical Context. Boston, ma: Houghton mifflin co, 2006. Print.