Review: "A Good Man Is Hard To Find" By Flannery O'Connor
Politics and Activism

Review: "A Good Man Is Hard To Find" By Flannery O'Connor

3492

Sometimes while on a journey, the final destination remains different than the original plan. In the story "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," by Flannery O'Connor, the grandma unintentionally leads her family into the face of danger. Although she is depicted as a seemingly "good" character, the grandma holds responsibility for the death of her family because she fails to recognize the multiple warnings of their upcoming encounter with a convict, The Misfit. While the unexpected violence remains shocking, O'Connor intentionally uses indicative foreshadowing to expose the destructive path the grandma consistently chooses when confronted by good versus evil.

Irony in the story creates a deceitful journey where characters are confronted with which direction will lead the way. While this is prevalent through the grandma's speech and actions, she consistently contradicts the thoughts she states early on. In the beginning of the story, she explains to the family how The Misfit is on the loose and heading towards Florida while claiming, "I wouldn't take my children in any direction with a criminal like that aloose in it." Even though the family overruled the grandmother's opinion, she was still the first one in the car the next morning anxiously awaiting the trip. Her concern for danger progressively diminishes compared to her original statement and instead, the excitement for the venture overrides her knowledge. Furthermore, the grandma consistently expresses the inability to trust anyone nowadays, claiming the search for a truly good man is a difficult task. Yet in a time of need, when the accident occurs, the grandma finds herself relying on anyone who comes down the road to help out. Unfortunately, she crosses paths with The Misfit but still pleads for safety, trying to convince him that deep down she knows he is a good man. Of course, when faced with an obstacle, she succumbs to evil, disregarding her instinctive knowledge. If the grandma had listened to the given warnings she recognized from the start, then a successful journey would have resulted.

The implied death of the grandma and her family begins early within the story, yet she still chooses to disregard the warnings offered. It is almost difficult to understand how the family failed to recognize the constant signs which lead straight into danger. While preparing for the road trip, the grandma dresses in her Sunday best in the chance an accident may occur so "anyone seeing her dead on the highway would know at once she was a lady." This is an abnormal thought to consider when getting ready; she is dressing in her best, similarly to how the deceased individual is prepared before the burial. Additionally, while continuing on their journey, the family passes a field which contains five or six graves. As this contributes to the mysterious mood and path they are headed towards, the number of tombs happens to match the number of family members inside the car. Yet once again, the family thinks nothing of it and continues anyways down a "dirt road" following "sharp curves on dangerous embankments" towards the town of Toombsboro, another sign of death reflected just within the name as the setting implies misfortune. Furthermore after the car accident occurs, the grandma notices an approaching "big black battered hearse-like automobile." Representing evil, as the Misfit approaches, death lingers and becomes imminent. Once the family is killed, it is clear the grandma's death will proceed, as mentioned in the beginning of the story, "she has to go everywhere we go." While there were many instances that allowed for the family to avoid their destined fate, the grandma's stubborn and incognizant behavior cost them their lives.

Even when all the signs leading towards misfortune are given, the grandma still chooses to disregard her knowledge and act upon her instincts. While she is considered to be one of the morally good characters, she really is just as guilty as The Misfit. If she had decided to stay home from the trip, none of the events would have taken place and the final outcome would have been completely different. She caused a chain of events which lead to danger and death, while ignoring all the signs that blatantly warned her the destructive path ahead. Evil consumed her and always managed to win.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

I was blessed with thick, full hair up until my late teens. At the time, I cursed my hairiness — this was before full eyebrows became trendy or cool, and were instead a point of bullying many of my fellow full-browed teens can relate to.

Later in my 20s, hormonal stability was something I was thankful for, though a major side effect ended up being hair loss — on my head, lashes, and brows. I now find my filling in my brows on an almost daily basis. As much as I enjoy toying with and testing out different brow-filling products, it'll never be quite the same as being able to have "I woke up like this" full, Gigi Hadid-esque brows.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

May Is Mental Health Awareness Month, A Reminder We Need Even More In Quarantine

You're going through something brand new — that's worth talking about.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This isn't new to 2020, but oh man, if we ever needed a reminder about the importance of mental health, now is the time. With different states all over the place in regard to stay-at-home orders, phased reopenings, and a "new normal," we're experiencing conflict, fear, changes, and unknowns that can easily trigger mental struggles we already have or spark feelings we've never had before. Yes, May is always Mental Health Awareness Month, but in quarantine, that need for positive mental health is taken to a whole new level.

Keep Reading... Show less
Netflix

Everyone is LOVING "Outer Banks," as you've probably heard. And if you haven't caught the hype for the show yet, these articles will definitely give you a taste of what you're missing.

If you already have seen and fallen in love with the teen heartthrob crew, you need to get on board with some of these theories for season two!

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

These 11 Face Masks On Etsy Support Small Businesses While Fighting The Spread Of Coronavirus

We're staying safe as states start lifting lockdown guidelines.

I, like most people who have had the luxury of being able to stay at home during this time, haven't spent much time outdoors at all. But when I do brave the great outdoors for a walk or to get to the grocery store, you won't find me without a mask.

My family and I were lucky enough to have family friends who were sewing some and had extras to give to us, but most of my friends and loved ones outside my immediate family have had to order some (or make a makeshift one out of scarves or bandanas).

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

13 Reasons We're Using Quarantine As The Ultimate Excuse For Online Shopping This Month

The one thing we haven't distanced from is our bank account.

Throughout quarantine, I've been FaceTiming most of my friends in a full turtleneck or the go-to cozy sweater I keep wrapped around the chair in my room. Either way, I always have tea in my hands to keep myself warm — till this past week.

For most of the country who hasn't had the luck of quarantining in 90-degree weather on their family's lake house or with a backyard pool, things began to change this month. Our favorite shows came out with summer seasons, the sun came out, and we started spending more time outside.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Sat Down (Virtually) With Morgan Wooten To Talk About Coronavirus's Impact On The Wellness Industry

Just because coronavirus has greatly impacted the wellness industry doesn't mean wellness stops.

Morgan Wooten

If you're anything like me, your weekly fitness classes are a huge part of your routine. They keep me fit, healthy, and sane. Honestly, these classes help my mental health stay in tip-top shape just as much as they help my physical health.

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, gyms and fitness studios are facing temporary closure. Yes, this means my personal routine is thrown a curveball, but this also means the wellness industry is one of many that is looking at unemployment and hardship. Do I miss my Monday spin class? Of course. But do the wellness professionals whose worlds were flipped upside down have a lot more to overcome than a slight change of routine? Absolutely. Thankfully, if anyone can prove the ultimate flexibility, it's the wellness industry.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments