Jose F. Martinez
Professor Jane Focht-Hansen
Irony in “A Good Man Is Hard to Find”
Flannery O' Connor's story, "A Good Man is Hard to find" is built upon irony. The definition of irony comes in different forms coming from the literary terms and definitions, “Cicero referred to irony as "saying one thing and meaning another." Irony comes in many forms. Verbal irony (also called sarcasm), Dramatic irony (the most important type for literature), and Situational irony (also called cosmic irony)” (Literary Terms and Definitions). The main character, the grandmother, is an extremely ironic person. The author uses grandmother to express many forms of irony. Grandmother sees herself as a very innocent, caring person but she is actually a quite deceitful person who tells false stories to get what she wants. An example of verbal irony from grandmother occurs when she wants to go to Tennessee and not to Florida; so she makes sure to remind her family that a killer called “The Misfit,” is preying upon people in Florida. Although, later in the story she is begging for her life, telling “The Misfit” that he seem like a good man, and one that was brought up with good intentions. Grandmother finally agree to go on the trip, but she sneaks her cat, because she knows her son wouldn’t allow the cat to be in a motel for several days. With this cat, comes an extreme example of situational irony. As she brought the cat along for good purposes, the cat brings the danger with it. As the grandmother thinks of a terrible memory, she flinches and the cat flings out of her arms hitting the driver, the grandmother’s son, and causing the car to spin out of control. The grandmother creates several lies in the story, Flannery O’Connor tells in the story one of the lies that the grandmother creates, “The grandmother said she would tell them a story if they would keep quiet. When she told a story, she rolled her eyes and waved her head and was very dramatic. She said...
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Sheppard, Jim “What Flannery O 'Connor Got Right: Epiphanies Aren 't Permanent." The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, 04 Jan. 2013. Web. 21 July 2015.
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