Who Made the “Monument” Fall Down?

"A rose for Emily" is one of Faulkner's most shocking yet thought-provoking short-fictions, which depicts the tragic life of Miss Emily Grierson. Her tragedy can be attributed to several reasons, including her domineering father and her conflict with the surrounding people. However, the most fundamental and devastating element that causes her tragedy is her clinging to the past.
Emily's father, with his tyrant-like image, exerts a tenacious influence on her life. Even when she died, his father's ubiquitous presence is felt. "Above her dead body sits the crayon face of her father, musing profoundly." And it is right this man, who, from the very beginning, corrupts Emily's sense of reality and deprives her of the possibility of a happy, blessed marriage life. "We had long thought of them as a tableau…the two of them framed by the back-flung front door". (P130) In this father-daughter relationship description, Miss Emily is but a pathetic figure over-protected, restrained and suppressed by her father while with a horsewhip in hand, her father appears as a rather formidable and rigid figure. Actually, brandishing the self-conscious high social status as a weapon, her father repels the town's young men from advancing, thus mercilessly forcing young Emily into a confined maiden life of no choice. Later, as we can perceive acutely, as Emily is totally sealed from reality in her restricted world framed out of his father's mind, the distinction between reality and illusion, present and past begin to blur, eventually bringing her to retreat into a reality of pure inner world.
Emily’s conflict with surrounding people also plays an essential role in her tragedy. Born of noble descent, she remains not only "a tradition, duty, and a care, a sort of hereditary obligation upon the town"(P129), but also “a communal property” and the centre of public speculation. The town's people, although repeatedly vanquished by the arrogant Griersons, insist on keeping a watchful eye on...