Alice Walker

Alice Walker’s “The Flowers” is a short story of a young African-American girl called Myop. On the other hand, “A Rose for Miss Emily” unwraps a story of a woman named Emily and is published by William Faulkner. Just from the titles of the stories, one can tell that they have similar point of view. Both stories are named after flowers, and this shows how similar they are, and yet have different stories. They both have women as protagonists; they share the same antagonists; both stories are set in the south, talk about girls who have lost their youth, and have encounters with skeletons. Nevertheless, time is the only factor that seems to be of the essence in both narrations. In other words, Emily and Myop lost track of time, lost their youth.

In Walker’s story, leaves signify improvement of life in various aspects such as growth, fertility, and openness. In this case, leaves mentioned in the story represent the passage of time. In other words, the passage of time in question is that of Myop, growing from a young naïve girl, to a mature woman. The fallen leaves described by walker alternatively mean that Myop’s life is lost and wasted. At the beginning of the story, Myop’s innocence is described by light terms, but as she grew older, things change, and she is described by darker terms. Her world is not as peaceful as it was, and she is stuck not knowing where to go, and this is when she finds the corpse (Faulkner 3). The author uses things that signify the changes that occurred in Myop’s life.

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Time is all what defines the unwrapping of these stories. At the start, Myop travelled with her mother; however, she is now old enough to go out by herself. In other words, time expands the realm of understanding, and; therefore, one sees things differently. Walker uses time to document the transition of Myop’s innocence to the awareness of the world’s atrocities. The description of the body part of the corpse found by Myop shows the changes brought by time. In addition to this, the author also talks of summer and autumn; the change of the seasons also signifies the progressive changes brought by time. Summer represents maturity and growth, while on the other hand, autumn represents the beginning or the end, thus understanding the world.

The storyline of this novel is about Emily, a lonely woman who does not socialize with servants and neighbors. She is only seen standing at her window in her dusty and unfurnished house. The story is in the form of narration about Emily’s life after her death. Her neighbors especially women are curious to enter her house that has not been visited for ten years. Emily has a Negro servant who is seen daily with a shopping basket and knows remarkably little about Emily. The narrator even describes his voice as rusty because of disuse. After she was hiding for several months, people are astonished to see how she gained weight and how her hairs started graying. It is obvious that she ages faster and even falls sick because of denying herself social life. Even after the death of her father, Emily remains single, and, by the looks of things, she does not have intentions of getting married (Walker 12).

Throughout the book, Emily represents an object of pity and sympathy to the townspeople. His father drove away all the men that wanted to marry her claiming that they were not smart enough for her. Her life has been empty, with no friends, and even after the death of her father she still remains single. This is until an outsider from the north arrives in town. Homer Barron seems to bond with Emily, and people speculate that they are in love, and they will soon have a wedding. This does not last for long. At first, Barron influences Emily to begin a social life, and after some weeks Barron disappears and is never seen again. People thought that maybe Barron returned to his homeland, while, in reality, he was poisoned by Emily.

Emily’s house acts as a shield that protects Emily from revealing her true identity. Being an outsider, Emily refuses to follow the culture that has been practiced for years in his village (Dungy 21). Teaching children shows how Emily believes in retain and recovering the lost art. Emily does not change her lifestyle even after years. For example, she does not want her mail to be delivered to her home, and instead she prefers getting it from the post office as she did when she was a young girl. It is clearly evident that Emily is a traditional woman and sticks to her believes and lifestyle. In Emily’s case, time does not have an effect on her lifestyle.

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In analyzing any piece of art, it is valuable to get into the writer’s background. This enables an analyst to get a full insight on what the writer means. In using the biographical approach, an analyst develops a connection of ideas in the piece of work and the writer. This will help in answering questions that are always a part of an analysis. In both stories, there are various similarities; however, time seems to be the most prominent one, and is not just a theme, but also the main factor behind the storyline of these short stories. Additionally, time is behind the changes occurring to Myop’s life. However, Emily seems to stick to her world and does not change her lifestyle as time goes by. From this perspective, it is clear that these stories are remarkably different.


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