Despite the fact that we are not instantly aware of O’Connor’s indication of foreshadowing, we begin to see a pattern of this family’s inevitable rendezvous with destiny. Kathleen Wilson writes in Short Story for Students, “Many writers of short fiction include few superfluous details; every detail contributes to an overall effect that the story intends to produce. Thus, certain descriptive phrases or dialogue in a story that first appear to have no special significance often take on new meaning in retrospect.” (104) The writer’s use of minute details, such as the introduction of characters, surroundings, or simple clothing choices can be indicative of the direction a story is progressing. For instance, in the very first paragraph we l...
... middle of paper ...
...mindful of subtle details that might otherwise go unnoticed.
Writers employ countless literary tools with the intention of conveying their theme or message behind a story. In A Good Man Is Hard to Find, Flannery O’Connor utilizes foreshadowing, characters and symbolism to impart her lesson of mortality and salvation. We are able to observe minor details within the story through these academic instruments, urging the reader continue on to see how the story will come to conclusion. The knowledge that evil exists in the world, and that stories like this are not uncommon, brings to mind thoughts of my own mortality and salvation. Does this accidental meeting with the grandmother and her family lead to a personal and spiritual growth for The Misfit? The ability to recognize and apply literary tools when reading stories can greatly enhance a reader’s overall experience.
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