Short Story

A Good Man Is Hard To Find Literature Review, Summary, Author and Characters

A Good Man Is Hard to Find

A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories is a collection of short stories by American author Flannery O’Connor. The collection was first published in 1955.

Author Flannery O’Connor
Country USA
Language English
Genre(s) Short story, Southern Gothic (a literature genre of Southern writing)
Publication type Collection
Media type You can get the book in Print or digital format.
Publication date
Awards / Nominations

A Good Man Is Hard To Find Literature Review

Flannery O’Connor was a Catholic religious writer, and her stories always depicted a more profound spiritual message. The tale, “A Good Man Is Hard to Find,” is not an exception. The tale starts off by telling of a family on their way to a vacation in Florida. On the way, the grandmother reminisces about her youth and convinces her son to take an escapade to an old house. Unfortunately, her cat escapes after the car crashes into a ditch. Coincidentally, they encounter an escaped convict, Misfit, who leads them to the woods for their murder. The misfit engages in a conversation concerning his religious doubts, and that prompts the grandmother’s Christian sympathy, she informs him that he is one of her children (P.715). This angers the misfit, and he ends up shooting her first.

The theme of religion is brought out in the Misfits conversation, he says, “My daddy said I was a different breed of dog from my brothers and sisters. ‘You know,’ Daddy said, ‘it’s some that can live their whole life out without asking about it, and it’s others has to know why it is, and this boy is one of the latters. He’s going to be into everything!”(p.713). These words give us a deeper understanding of the Misfits personality. He is curious, and his thoughts inspire his actions. In his eyes, he is more than a thoughtless killer.

A lot of symbolism, allegory, and imagery have been used in the story. O’Connor tells us of the forest looming over the ditch where the family has been trapped. She describes it as “tall and dark and deep” (p.711). This creates an image of impending danger. It is in that same forest where the family is led by the misfit to face their murder.

Charters, Ann. The Story and Its Writer. 9th ed., 2015.

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