Flannery O’Connor, in her short life, wrote one novel and many short stories that impact literature to this day. She wrote two superb short stories, A Good Man is Hard to Find and Good Country People, which have many similarities hidden in the theme of their complex text. While both stories include themes about religion, identity, and the way we view others, the endings are astoundingly different. Nonetheless, O’Connor’s main theme concerning the way we view other people, is the most significant in both short stories. In Good Country People, Mrs. Hopewell repeatedly states that the bible salesman is the “salt of the earth” meaning that he is just a good and simple country boy.
In the short story, “A Good Man is Hard to Find”, the author, Flannery O'Connor, demonstrates how a family vacation can quickly face a violent end, caused by a criminal known as “The Misfit.” Looking at the short story through a feminist point of view, one can quickly gather that O’Connor uses the traditional gender roles right from the beginning of the story. As reading the title, it automatically suggests the men in this short story are untrustworthy, not prevalent, and dangerous. With that being said, the female characters in this story are viewed in the eyes of how a woman should act.
It is the grandmother’s selfishness that leads to the death of her family. The short story “A good Man is Hard to Find” teaches us that nothing good come from being selfish. Being selfish has plenty of consequences. One of them is that when you are selfish you or your loved once suffer. In the short story by O’Connor, the grandmother’s selfishness leads to the death of her family.
The Grandmother is a well-dressed and a proper southern lady. She is also the center of action in the short story, "A Good Man Is Hard to Find". The grandmother seems very suspicious at first, and thinks her son Bailey will be forever small and has to abide by her rules. In her eyes she is never been wrong but knows it all. When we become up-close and personal with the grandmother we see that she's this bad person, which she appears to be old-fashioned, manipulative, and self-serving as a whole.
The grandmother uses Jesus as a scapegoat to show how she is a child of God while the Misfit tells of how he really perceives Jesus and that there is no justification of his actions. In the event of the car accident, the Grandmother was left with a physical crisis that quickly showed as her family was sent off into the woods to be killed one by one. This soon transitioned to a spiritual crisis both between the Grandmother and the Misfit as she uses Jesus's name to try and escape her fate. This spiritual crisis leads the characters to express their personal conception of reality and how they perceive the revelation of the situation that they are in. The Grandmother has a sense that reality should revolve around her and that she should manipulate tools such as religion to benefit her outcome.
One of O’Conner acclaimed work is “A Good Man is Hard to Find.” A family plans a vacation to Florida, but the Grandmother suggests to go to Tennessee, the place she grew up, instead because a serial killer, The Misfit, is in the loose headed to Florida. The family dismisses the Grandmother attempt and embark on a trip to Florida. The Grandmother, using her cunning ability, convinces the family to take a detour to visit an old house "with treasure". The family listens and heads toward the old house.
Even though human nature is flawed within Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man Is Hard to Find”, there is a chance for redemption near the story’s ending. In “A Good Man is Hard to Find”, the Grandmother has an epiphany with the Misfit that increases her chance for redemption. Throughout the entire story, the Grandmother is known for her selfish thinking and her one-track mind that, like many humans, is only focused on what she would like to do. Redemption for
“A Good Man is Hard to find”, was one of Ms. Flannery O’Connor’s well known story that shows what she is known for in her writing : violence, well thought characters with humor, and shows her Roman Catholic faith. Throughout the story, there are certain details that make the story what it seems to be than what Ms. O’Connor had to portray. Although it would be seen as a shocking violent murder plot all in one, there can be another side to the story as well. In the story of A Good Man is Hard to Find shows that people would think O’Connor was mocking religion, in actuality she was not. The characters in the story are used to expose the idea between good and evil and hypocrisy.
The story opens with a man named Bailey who is going on a trip with his family to Florida. However, his mother had other plans and becomes the "manipulative grandmother lecturing her apathetic son" (Sparrow). At first she tries to convince her son to change the trip destination saying ""(O 'Connor). It might be inferred that she meant well by warning Bailey about the prison escapee traveling in the same direction. Unfortunately, later in the story the reader finds out that .
The setting In “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” is in the south, near or around Florida. The Grandmother shows to be a religious woman who uses her religion as hope to get out of the situation she placed herself in. In “A Good Man is Hard to Find”, Flannery O’Connor writes, “ ‘If you would pray,’ the old lady said, ‘Jesus will help you.’ ‘That’s right,’ The Misfit said ‘Well them, why don’t you pray?’ she asked trembling with delight suddenly.
In Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” she uses writing skills such as symbolism and imagery to get across her different themes to the reader’s with plenty of room for self-interpretation. Though O’Connor’s work could be defined as cynical, she does an excellent job of writing in the third person with her uncomplicated structure of sentences leaving plenty of room for her character 's thoughts, feelings, and actions to get across the realism of our world. "A Good Man is Hard to Find" is a battle between a grandmother with a rather artificial sense of goodness, and a criminal who symbolizes evil. The grandmother treats goodness as having good manners, and coming from a family of higher class, but at the end of the story comes to
The story gives way of foreshadowing the unfortunate ending in several instances. The first one is when Grandmother Bailey is trying to change the destination of the trip by showing her son the newspaper article about the man that escaped from the penitentiary. "Here this that calls himself The Misfit is aloose from the Federal Pen and headed toward Florida and you read here what it says he did to these people. Just you read it”
and they are all planning a trip to Florida. Although it has been decided that they are going to Florida, the grandmother is frustrated and tries to convince her son and his family that they should go to Tennessee instead since more family lives there and there are sights to see there. She also argues that going to Florida would only put the family in danger as there was a serial killer on the loose who goes by the name of “Misfit”. This, in itself, already raises a red flag for readers since they just so happen to be travelling to a place where a serial killer is running loose. Despite the grandmother’s protests against their trip to Florida, they all get in the car and begin their journey.
The Role of Family in “A Good Man is Hard to Find” “A Good Man is Hard to Find”, written by Flannery O’Connor is a short story that brings out mystery and cruelty. Manipulation plays a big role in this story by the grandmother. She tends to manipulate her family and tends to get her way by playing with them. Although the author wanted to give many perspectives of the grandmother, we as reader got our own views of her.