Winter Will Be Here Soon -- Study hard as finals approach...


 
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Archetypes In A Rose For Emily

 

Archetypes are, by definition, previous images, characters,
or patterns that recur throughout literature consistently
enough to be considered a universal concept or situation.
Archetypes also can be described as complexes of
experiences that come upon us like fate, and their effects
are felt in our most personal life. 

Although there are several archetypes found in the novel,
"A Rose For Emily", , the most important one is Emily's
father. Archetypes are like riverbeds which dry up when the
water deserts them, but can find it again at any time. This
short story offers many interpretations, however, the
structure of the story breaks down into two stages: past
and present. By examining the archetypes within the story,
it can be suggested that Emily's over-protective father
stands to represent Emily's feminist struggle, the ongoing
battle for women to have an equal place in society. Emily
should be able to do as she pleases, but her dependence on
her father does not allow her to have that freedom. Her
father's over-protection is evident in this passage, "We
remembered all the young men her father had driven away,
and we knew that with nothing left, she would have to cling
to that which had robbed her, as people will" (279). Her
father robs her from many of life's necessities. She misses
out on having friends, being a normal "woman," and her
ability to be happy. Emily is not able to live a normal
life which she indirectly blames on her father. Emily is so
used to having her father be there for her, she figures
that by keeping his body he can still be part of her life. 

The Jungian archetype of this feminist struggle can be
noted as: Emily is not able to live a normal life because
her father keeps her under his thumb. In relation to
keeping her father's body, she keeps Homer Barron's body so
long because she feels that she has finally accomplished
something in her life. Emily is not ready to give up that
feeling. The feminist struggle is hard to detect but it is
still there. 

In conclusion, there are two archetypes in A Rose for
Emily: Emily's father and Homer Barron. Emily's father is
the chief archetype because he is the reason for Emily's
breakdowns. She has been scarred for life which she
obviously never over comes. 
 



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