Flannery O'Conner's Analysis:
A Good Man is Hard To Find & A Displaced Person
"Through her assortment of unpalatable characters and violent actions, O'Connor tries to show grace at work in the world. According to her beliefs Christ, the Incarnate Son of God, has shown that God so loved the world that He became man Himself. Yet this God is not accepted by men, so they have to be shocked into a recognition of their need for Him and the salvation He offers." (MAYER, 1976) In this analysis I will explain how O'conner uses the two stories "A Good Man is Hard To Find" & "A Displaced Person" to open the eyes of her readers about God and his salvation as Mayer said above.
The body of works of Ms. Flannery O'Conner is absolutely amazing. I'll be quite honest, I was never once interested in English literature, let alone southern gothic literature, but her stuff blew me away; her analogy and philosophy, all was very intriguing. O'Conner is one writer to me that seems to always have a message in her stories, there are writers for example like Hemmingway who writes with no ending and no beginning but Flannery, in her style of literature starts off with a point and ends with a bang! She isn't afraid to tackle the issue of death nor is she afraid to discuss God and virtues. I really appreciate her because she fears nothing in her writing.
O'Conner was a southern gothic American writer born into an Orthodox Christian family in the state of Georgia. At the age of 12 she moved to her mother's birth place, Milledgeville where most of her experiences came from and where many of her stories revolve around. Later, in 1945 she graduated from the University of Iowa with a Master of Fine Arts & Literature and at 21 she published her first short story, the Geranium. Due to her Catholic religion, all of O'Conner's writings were influenced by her spirituality. Her major theme was based on the redemption of the human society before God. O'Conner enjoyed the way the protestants behaved and used a lot of them in her writings. In an interview she said "I can write about Protestant believers better than Catholic believers - because they express their belief in diverse kinds of dramatic action which is obvious enough for me to catch. I can't write about anything subtle." (Liukkonen, 2008) That is the reason why her literature is very dramatic and in a way amusing but tragic. In her writing I always notice the incorporation of the Seven deadly sins, pride, lust, envy, gluttony, anger, greed and sloth. She uses those subjects to create strong issues and developing plot and even stronger characters. She tries to send a message about how the moral values of people keep getting worse over time. In A Good Man is Hard to Find the grandmother tries to talk the Misfit into having mercy on her and her family, she asks him to pray, but of course he doesn't. The misfits way of making everything right for his self is by making everything worse for everyone else, without taking pleasure in it. Through her writing you notice that O’Conner believes that through Jesus there is much happiness, salvation and forgiveness. She tries to make people become better Christians through her works. O'Conner's dark perception of the corrupt world does come out a lot in "A Good Man is Hard to Find". One way she does this is by portraying all the bad characters as being secular, and that usually follows a long list of terrible things happening to them, when they disobey. It's almost as if a dark cloud is hovering over them. O'Conner allows the car to fall in a ditch when the Grandmother's cat runs over the face of the father after the grandmother was told to leave the cat. That is when all of the chaos begins. One by one each person is being executed and of course O'Conner allows the grandmother to redeem herself before she is killed.
In “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” the grandmother is representative of Godliness and Christianity which O’Connor apparently believed to...
Cited: Jr., L. D. (1985). Two ladies of The South. In M. J. Clark, Critical Essay on Flannery O 'Conner (p. 24). Boston: G.K. Hall & Co.
Liukkonen, P. (2008). Flannery. Retrieved January 29, 2009, from media specialist: http://kirjasto.sci.fi/flannery.htm
MAYER, D. R. (1976). Flannery O 'Connor and The Peacock. JSTOR , 1.
O 'Conner, F. (2007). A Good Man Hard Is Hard To Find. In A. Booth, Norton Introduction to Literature (p. 1239). New York: W. W. NORTON & COMPANY.
O 'Conner, F. (2007). A Good man Is Hard To Find. In A. Booth, Norton Introduction to Literature (p. 1231). New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2007 .
O 'Conner, F. (2007). A Good Man Is Hard To Find. In A. Booth, The Norton Introduction to Literature (p. 1236). New York: W. W. NORTON & COMPANY.
WILLIAMS, J. (2009, Febuary 26). Stranger than paradise. Retrieved December 29, 2009, from New York times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/01/books/review/Williams-t.html
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