Mrs. Emily is described from the point-of-view of the townspeople as a very haughty person, respected by everyone because of her noble origins. Her refusal to pay taxes as well as all her other whims and peculiarities are accepted by everyone. When she dies however, the same community is shocked as they realize Mrs. Emily had entertained a perverse obsession during her secluded life, and has slept with the dead body of her former lover, whom she had poisoned herself.
Thus, the struggle between the womans desires and the opposing forces is now apparent: she stubbornly holds on to the memory of her father and to the body of her dead lover, unwilling to relinquish her feelings for them.
Thus, the two stories portray the struggle between the natural body and the spiritual side of man, resolving into delirium and pathological states.
Bierce, Ambrose. Collected Works. New York: Oxford, 1977.
Faulkner, William. Collected Stories of William Faulkner. New.