Select a subject to preview related courses: It is hard to imagine why Tobe would remain all those years in such an unusual arrangement. It is unclear why Tobe chooses to stay with Emily, but it can be inferred that he was once a slave and felt like he had nowhere else to go. The narrator describes the passage of time, 'Daily, monthly, yearly we watched the Negro grow grayer and more stooped, going in and out with the market basket. In this lesson, we will examine the character of Tobe from William Faulkner's short story 'A Rose for Emily.' Further, he may have felt the same sense of obligation to Emily or her family as other people in the community felt. Anyone can earn But Tobe's situation is like Miss Emily's times a zillion: he's her "old man-servant – a combined gardener and cook" (1.1). and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you. The only life that Miss Emily Grierson's male servant Tobe knows is working for her family.

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courses that prepare you to earn After all, she really has no choice in how she could live her life. ', Townspeople try to get Tobe to tell them about Emily, but 'he talked to no one, probably not even to her, for his voice had grown harsh and rusty, as if from disuse.' What are the limits? We can't say we blame him, either way. But besides the fact that Tobe keeps Emily alive and (sort of) well, we're not given a whole lot of information about Tobe. The reader is left wondering if he was an accomplice in Homer's murder, what his relationship with Emily was, why he enabled her bizarre behavior, and where he ended up after Emily's death. The onset of the story reveals that Miss Emily has died and the whole town is at her funeral. A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner I When Miss Emily Grierson died, our whole town went to her funeral: the men through a sort of respectful affection for a fallen monument, the women mostly out of curiosity to see the inside of her house, which no o ne save an old manservant---a combined gardener and cook - had seen in at least ten years. 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A Rose for Emily is a short story by William Faulkner. Tobe is introduced as 'an old man-servant--a combined gardener and cook,' and the only person who had seen the inside of the house for the last ten years. He protected her privacy from the prying eyes and ears of the town—in fact, for most of Miss Emily's life, Tobe is her only tenuous connection to the outside world. | {{course.flashcardSetCount}} © 2020 Shmoop University Inc | All Rights Reserved | Privacy | Legal. By entering your email address you agree to receive emails from Shmoop and verify that you are over the age of 13. Create your account, Already registered? JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser. Despite their questions, Tobe says nothing about what goes on inside. credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. Salman Hussain A Rose for Emily Tobe's Point of View Miss Emily did not talk much, but you can say a lot about her from her actions and her lifestyle. Determine which of the following statements is... What is the main conflict in A Rose for Emily? However, instead of facing the facts that one of Jefferson's most prominent citizens may have committed a terrible crime, blame for the smell is laid on Tobe. Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. Sciences, Culinary Arts and Personal He remains loyal to Emily until her death; then, he leaves and never returns. (2.1). Tobe gave his whole life to the care of Miss Emily. 's' : ''}}. imaginable degree, area of He protected her privacy from the prying eyes and ears of the town—in fact, for most of Miss Emily's life, Tobe is her only tenuous connection to the outside world. TOBE'S SIGNIFICANCE IN "A ROSE FOR EMILY" In William Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily," a search for the motivation of Emily Grierson's murder of Homer Barron usually begins with an effort to understand Miss Emily herself. Overall, Tobe's character leaves more questions than answers. Tobe is the African American servant who continues to work in Emily's southern home after the Civil War. When Emily gets angry, she yells, 'Tobe! She's a woman in the turn-of-the-century South; society has her completely on lockdown. They claim to fully expect such an odor. Earn Transferable Credit & Get your Degree.

Did you know… We have over 220 college To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page. Until she is understood, everything remains an enigma.

Tobe gave his whole life to the care of Miss Emily. In an era when people are still showing up to funerals "in their brushed Confederate uniforms […]" (5.2). All rights reserved. And he's Black. There were not many options available for African Americans during that time, and there is no indication that either Tobe or Emily had anyone but each other. Losing her father, and being unable to form relationships with other people has left Emily isolated, except for her loyal servant, Tobe. A Rose for Emily is a short story by William Faulkner.