In Flannery O’Connor’s short story “A Good Man is Hard to Find” the author uses foreshadowing to lead up to the unexpected twist of fate that the family finds when meeting the story’s antagonist “The Misfit.” As columnist in English Language Notes David Piwinski explains, “The murders of the grandmother and her family by the Misfit come as no surprise to the attentive reader, since O’Connor’s story is filled with incidents and details that ominously foreshadow the family’s catastrophic fate” (73). The following passage will explore O’Connor’s usage of foreshadowing in “A Good Man is Hard to Find.” In the beginning of the story O’Connor writes that the grandmother does not wish to go to Florida. (183) In fact the grandmother says everything she can to change the minds of her of family.” (O’Connor 183) The grandmother reads her son Bailey the story of a notorious escaped convict who is supposedly headed to Florida (O’ Connor 183-84). Flannery O’Connor states: “Here this fellow 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. I wouldn’t take my children in any direction with a criminal like that aloose in it. I couldn’t answer to my conscience if I did” (183). O’Connor mentions that, the grandmother has a private agenda to meet with her connections in Tennessee, and she uses this in an attempt to deter the family away from heading to Florida (184). O’Connor’s usage of foreshadowing the eventual encounter with “The Misfit” is evident by the Grandmother’s attempt to take the family somewhere else besides Florida (183-84). Furthermore, the family’s unwillingness to listen to the Grandmother increases the foreshadowing of futur... ... middle of paper ... ...e grandmother and her family. Although O’Connor uses foreshadowing from the beginning of the story, she never directly reveals the story’s ending. By understanding O’Connor’s usage of foreshadowing, the reader can further understand the development leading toward the story’s climax. Works Cited Link, Alex. “Means, Meaning and Mediated Space in: A Good Man is Hard to Find” Southern Quarterly 44.4 (2007): 125-138. EBSCO Host. Web. 3 Mar. 2014. O’Connor, Flannery. “A Good Man is Hard to Find.” Literature and the Writing Process. Tenth ed. Eds. Elizabeth McMahan, Susan X Day, Robert Funk, and Linda S. Coleman. Boston: Pearson Education Inc. 2014. 183-193. Print. Piwinski, David. “Gone With the Wind in Flannery O’Connor’s A Good Man is Hard to Find: An Anagological Biblical Allusion” English Language Notes 38.4 (June 2001): 73-76 EBSCO Host. Web. 2 Mar. 2014.
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As I read Flannery O’Connor’s short story “A Good Man is Hard to Find”, I find myself being completely consumed by the rich tale that the author weaves; a tragic and ironic tale that concisely and precisely utilizes irony and foreshadowing with expert skill. As the story progresses, it is readily apparent that the story will end in a tragic and predictable state due to the devices which O’Connor expertly employs and thusly, I find that I cannot stop reading it; the plot grows thicker with every sentence and by doing so, the characters within the story are infinitely real in my mind’s eye. As I consider these factors, the story focuses on two main characters; that of the grandmother, who comes across as self-centered and self-serving and The Misfit, a man, who quite ingeniously, also appears to be self-centered and self-serving. It is the story behind the grandmother, however, that evidence appears to demonstrate the extreme differences between her superficial self and the true character of her persona; as the story unfolds, and proof of my thought process becomes apparently clear.
The narrator starts the story giving background information about the grandmother and her son, Bailey. The narrator explains that the "grandmother didn't want to go to Florida" (320). Although a major conflict could result from her dislike of the family's choice of vacation spots, it does not. When the grandmother first speaks she asks Bailey to read a newspaper article that she has found. She attempts to change his mind about not going to Florida, by saying, "Here this fellow 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..." (320). Bailey does not ...
In "A Good Man is Hard to Find" by Flannery O'Connor, the author successfully uses the literary technique of "foreshadowing" to enhance and to support her story. The story is presented mostly from the point of view of the grandmother. Near the end, the grandmother is killed following the death of her entire family. In the course of this story, she put a good uses of imagery to foreshadow the people and the events. These are times are when describing how the grandmother dress, the family’s death, and the conversation between the Misfit and the grandmother.
Douglas, Ellen. "O'Connor's 'A Good Man is Hard to Find.'" Contemporary Literature Criticism. Eds. Carolyn Riley and Phyllis Carmel Mendelson. Detroit, MI: Gale, 1976. Vol. 6. 381.
Although this story is told in the third person, the reader’s eyes are strictly controlled by the meddling, ever-involved grandmother. She is never given a name; she is just a generic grandmother; she could belong to anyone. O’Connor portrays her as simply annoying, a thorn in her son’s side. As the little girl June Star rudely puts it, “She has to go everywhere we go. She wouldn’t stay at home to be queen for a day” (117-118). As June Star demonstrates, the family treats the grandmother with great reproach. Even as she is driving them all crazy with her constant comments and old-fashioned attitude, the reader is made to feel sorry for her. It is this constant stream of confliction that keeps the story boiling, and eventually overflows into the shocking conclusion. Of course the grandmother meant no harm, but who can help but to blame her? O’Connor puts her readers into a fit of rage as “the horrible thought” comes to the grandmother, “that the house she had remembered so vividly was not in Georgia but in Tennessee” (125).
Bandy, Stephen C. "One of my babies": The Misfit and the Grandmother in Flannery O'Connor's short story 'A Good Man Is Hard to Find'. Studies in Short Fiction; Winter 1996, v33, n1, p107(11)
In the short story A Good Man Is Hard to Find, written by Flannery O’Connor, the theme that the definition of a ‘good man’ is mysterious and flawed is apparent. The reader must realize that it is difficult to universalize the definition of a good man because every person goes through different experiences. Thus, these experiences affect his or her viewpoint and in turn flaw ones view on a good man. O’Connor conveys this theme through her excellent use of diction, imagery, foreshadowing, and symbolism as well as through a creative use of repetition and an omniscient point of view.
Flannery O’ Connor’s story: “A Good Man is Hard to Find” is the tale of a vacation gone wrong. The tone of this story is set to be one irony. The story is filled with grotesque but meaningful irony. I this analysis I will guide you through the clues provided by the author, which in the end climax to the following lesson: “A Good Man” is not shown good by outward appearance, language, thinking, but by a life full of “good” actions.
In Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man Is Hard to Find,” a family of six set out on a vacation to Florida while an extremely dangerous criminal is on the loose. The family takes the grandmother, who is outraged that the family is traveling while The Misfit is scanning the countryside. Throughout the short story, O’Connor drops many hints to the reader, ultimately leading to the terrifying climax. Foreshadowing is more commonly noticed the second time a story is read as opposed to the first. Readers will pick up on the hints that foreshadow the events to come. Foreshadowing is used when grandmother mentions The Misfit in the opening paragraph, when grandmother dresses formally in case of an accident, and when the graves are noticed in the cottonfield.
In "A Good Man is Hard to Find," by Flannery O’Connor, one is struck by the unexpected violence at the end of the story. However, if one re-reads the story as second time, one will see definite signs of foreshadowing of the ending. In the course of this story, O’Connor uses strong imagery to foreshadow the people and the events in this story. There are three significant times she uses this technique. They are the description of the grandmother’s dress, the death of the family, and the conversation between the Misfit and the grandmother.
To conclude, Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man Is Hard To Find” is filled with irony and it is what makes the story so interesting. Without the use of these ironies the story would have been very different for the readers. Flannery O’Connor uses irony to enhance her writing and to push the readers to want to read further. She also uses this irony to explain some of her own concerns about the human condition. Verbal, dramatic, and cosmic ironies are all present in Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man Is Hard To Find” and are used skillfully by the author to enhance the reader’s experience.
In "A Good Man is Hard to find" by Flannery O'Connor, one is struck by the unexpected violence at the end of the story. However, if the story is read a second time, reader can see definite signs of foreshadowing that hints to the ending of the story. Through O'Connor's technique of strong imagery to foreshadow the people and the events in the story is very compelling. There are two significant times that she uses this technique. They are the description of the grandmother's dress and the graveyard.
O'Connor, Flannery. "A Good Man Is Hard to Find." The Story and Its Writer An Introduction to Short Fiction. 8th ed. Boston: Bedford / St. Martin's, 2011. 1042-053. Print.
In this case, the Grandmothers interactions with her family are not pleasant. She drives her family crazy with the constant comments that she makes, and her self-centered attitude is made apparent within the first few lines. She is seen being selfish in her endeavors as she tries to manipulate the family into going to Tennessee instead of Florida. Her “connections” she has in Tennessee are very important to her, even more so than what’s best for her family. She tries to convince her son, Bailey, by showing him a news article about a runaway criminal who calls himself “The Misfit”. Bailey shows his disinterest and lack of respect for his mother by completely ignoring her. Her daughter-in-law also provides lack of empathy by suggesting that she just “stay home.” Her own grandchildren even tease her and are quite rude when they say, “She wouldn’t stay home to be queen for a day” (243). The children’s behavior is a representative of lack of respect and discipline, and is “forecast” of future generations. O’ Connor’s displeasure with society during the time has often been attributed to her strong Catholic background and this certain displeasure has been woven into the story through a generation