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In William Faulkner's 1930 short story "A Rose For Emily,"

was the generation of politicians who tolerated Emily's tax evasion meant to mirror the way "bad agents" or abusive traditions from before the Civil War were tolerated after the war and even today?

Faulkner at Virginia

Faulkner at Virginia

This is a collection of audio clips (and digital print versions of them) from Faulkner's two years at the University of Virginia as a writer in residence. To find the clips where Faulkner discusses whether there might have been symbolism about the North and South represented by the town politicians and by Emily, I used “Clips” tab and scrolled down to the clips on "A Rose for Emily." In one of the clips, Faulker addresses my very question. However, he said he was more interested in creating the characters than in creating symbolism. He admitted that there may be more about the North and South in the story than he intended to provide. This leads me to next ask whether that symbolism (the town and characters as parables of north and south) is there despite the author's intention.

faulkner.lib.virginia.edu
MDAH Digital Archives - Mississippi Department of Archives and History

MDAH Digital Archives - Mississippi Department of Archives and History

For my second source, I wanted to find a primary source NOT written by Faulkner that might verify a my idea about it being too problematic to hold people accountable in the post Civil War era. I did a Google search for and found the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. I scrolled down to an archival collection called the Tax Rolls series. From there, I clicked on "Chicasaw" to get Chickasaw county tax rolls, 1818-1902. I clicked on a list of tax corrections and found an actual "tax forgiveness" decision made by local leaders for a school on a property owned by the "Odd Fellows." This demonstrated that the idea of being released from paying taxes was something that was "done" in rural Mississippi in the early decades of the 20th century. I still had not answered my question fully though, and I wanted to find a source such as a newspaper article that would directly address the idea that leaders in either the North or South might have found it too much trouble to bring people who had exploited others as members of the upper, slave-owning class, to justice.

mdah.ms.gov
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