Flannery O’Connor’s Good Country People Essay

Flannery O’Connor’s Good Country People Essay

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Flannery O’Connor’s “Good Country People,” describes the lives of a mother, Mrs. Hopewell and her daughter, Joy and the irony of their relationship. This passage from the short story expounds on their character development through details of their lives. The selected paragraph uses a matter-of-fact tone to give more information about Mrs. Hopewell and Joy. Flannery O’Connor has given an objective recount of the story, which makes the third person narrator a reliable source. Mrs. Hopewell’s feelings are given on her daughter to examine their relationship. It is reader who takes these facts to create an understanding of these women and their lives. This part of the story illustrates the aspects of their lives that they had little control over. Therefore, it indirectly shows how each woman acclimated to their circumstance. Although genetically related and living with one another, Mrs. Hopewell and Joy were exceedingly different people.
The passage relies on the setting of the story. It is written in 1955 and women were not seen as equal to men as they are in contemporary times. Women had more of a domestic role, while men were educated and worked to support the family. In that time, a country family had religious valves that Joy did not follow, unlike her mother. Mrs. Hopewell did not appreciate Joy’s success in her education. She believed girls went to school for their enjoyment not as a serious scholar, seeking intellect and a greater understanding of the world. Joy getting a Ph.D. in Philosophy is seen as a disappointment for a woman like Hrs. Hopewell. In an addition to the historical setting, the physical setting of their home on the farm plays a role in this story. For someone who is living in a rural area with wide-open acre...


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...another. As mother, she cares for her daughter but struggles to relate with her. She could see Hulga as a professor and Hopewell knows that she wanted to leave home. To compensate for their relationship and Hulga’s condition, Mrs. Hopewell treats her like a child. Hulga is an educated woman but continues to act like a child when it comes to her mother. Not only does she dress like a child, she stomps around the house to ensure that Mrs. Hopewell and Mrs. Freeman hear her. Hulga does not actually want her mother to understand her because she lashes out at her mother. If she truly wanted her mother to realize her philosophical thought she would have attempted to explain it and not shout at Hopewell. Each woman has her own faults.



Works Cited

O'Connor, Flannery. "Good Country People." Trans. Array A Good Man is Hard to Find. New York: Harcourt, 1995. 433-447. Print.

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