Essay on Flannery O ' Connor 's Life

Essay on Flannery O ' Connor 's Life

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Flannery O’Connor is known for her grotesque tales, and “A Good Man Is Hard to Find” is no exception. The story follows a family’s journey to Florida and their encounter with a wanted criminal, the Misfit. While the family drives through the woods, the Grandmother startles Bailey, the driver, which causes him to wreck the car. A car stops by the accident, but unfortunately it is the Misfit and his henchmen. The family is quickly killed off by the Misfit’s henchmen, leaving the Grandmother alone trying to persuade the Misfit to not kill her. Following the Grandmother’s epiphany, the Misfit shoots her after she tries to touch him. O’Connor presents the ending in an ambiguous way, asking readers if the Misfit will remain the same criminal he was after confronting the Grandmother. O’Connor implements details to convey that the Misfit was positively affected by the Grandmother. Through the details, O’Connor shows that the Misfit changed his philosophy on life, became less aggressive and understood his crime.
Firstly, O’Connor reevaluates the meaning of the Misfit’s life. Before the Grandmother’s death, the Misfit has stated that there is “no pleasure [in life] but meanness” (O’Connor 132). However, after the Grandmother’s death the Misfit removes the “meanness” from his philosophy before and simply declares that there is “no real pleasure in life” (O’Connor 133). O’Connor displays that meanness was taken away from the Misfit after confronting the Grandmother. Thus, murdering the Grandmother did not give the Misfit pleasure, but instead immediately changed his view of life. The Misfit who had stated that there is “no pleasure but meanness” only a few moments ago, reconsidered his personal idea of life to “it’s no real pleasure in life” ...


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... understood his crime and was positively affected by the Grandmother.
The Misfit committed his crimes for pleasure, and killing the Grandmother did not leave him smiling. The Grandmother’s transformation led the Misfit to change himself. O’Connor implies that the removal of his glasses signifies the turning point of the Misfit. All the events that follow the Grandmother’s death were a positive change for a person like him. The Misfit reevaluated the meaning of life, became more controlled, and understood the punishments that came with crime. Through this short story, O’Connor conveys the idea that it takes a catastrophic event to truly impact an individual’s purpose in life. Thus, this idea is true for both the Grandmother and the Misfit. The Grandmother experience epiphany by encountering the Misfit. The Misfit sees his life differently by meeting the Grandmother.

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