Hard To Find Theme

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The short story, “A Good Man is Hard to Find”, written by Flannery O 'Connor is a southern gothic heavily imbued with multiple themes. The short story revolves around a family taking a road trip to Tennessee. The short story, written primarily in third person direct discourse, gives the reader clear insight into the characters’ heads. Opening up with the grandmother imploring her son, Bailey, to take her along on the road trip with the rest of the family, the reader becomes acquainted with the insolent grandchildren. Flannery does well to construct a character list with diversified personality. This story is particularly ambiguous from the start, especially as it pertains to the title. at first glance, the title could be thought of as referring…show more content…
One by one, the Misfit orders his henchmen to take a member of the family into the woods and kill them in cold blood. However, the reader is confounded when the Misfit reveals that he was falsely imprisoned for his father’s death. O’Connor states: “The Misfit sneered slightly. ‘Nobody had nothing I wanted’ he said…’It was the head doctor at the penitentiary said what I had done was kill my daddy but I know that for a lie. My daddy died.. of the epidemic flu and I never had a thing to do with it.’”(pg 148). The reader does not expect this information to be revealed. Subsequent to this revelation, the reader had been constantly bombarded with negative notions of the killer. This scene serves as an abrupt break of negative feelings towards the killer, and instead this animosity is replaced with subtle sympathy. This prompts the readers to re-evaluate the killers character, until he murders the rest of the family. Ultimately, the theme is how widespread beliefs of a person can misconstrue their nature. This misunderstanding can result in the distortion of a person’s character, transforming them into something they never would have become. This is extremely applicable to the Misfit. Throughout the story, the reader becomes aware of the inherent negative perceptions of the misfit. This elicits hatred of the misfits in the eyes of the reader. However, this particular scene
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