A Good Man is Hard to Find
“To expect too much is to have a sentimental view of life and this is a softness that ends in bitterness.
(Brainy Quotes: Flannery O’Connor)O’Connor was a woman born in the south and she was an only child in a very strict Catholic family. The short story “A Good Man is Hard to Find” in some way represents the debilitating blood disease she had. The story is about a family who is traveling in the south and they are down there and run into a character known as the “Misfit” he is just out of jail. The type of criticism I will be using to analyze the short story is Feminist Criticism. The reason I am using Feminist Criticism is because it hits the characters and symbols that is needed to be Feminist Criticism. The aspects of Feminist Criticism, “A Good Man is hard to Find” can be analyzed by using character, symbols, and setting.
To begin with, the character aspect of feminist criticism fits with this short story “The grandmother didn’t want to go to Florida. She wanted to visit some of her connections in east Tennes- see and she was seizing at every chance to change Bailey’s mind. Bailey was the son she lived with, her only boy.” (O’Connor). This can go in the aspect of a character because this shows two types of it’s a superior female because the grandmother is stating what she wants and is trying to get her way.
Also, the character can go into the category of a suppressed female because she isn’t being heard to 100%. “She looks like an angel of gawd.” (O’Connor). This can go into the character aspect of feminist criticism because it is like she is being looked at as nothing but an object. This would be considered the superior male to be the one who is looking down on her. Next, the short story has the aspect of symbolism.
“The old lady settled herself comfortably, removing her white cotton gloves and putting them up with her purse on the shelf in front of the back window.” (Jordan)This is symbolism because it shows her attitude as an African American woman in the south. The gloves show that she is very proper women and she is highly respected in her family and the house hold that she lives in. The symbol also shows that is in charge of herself and no one can tell her what to do. “The family then stopped to get food at a restaurant, and the grandmother started talking to someone about “the misfit” getting out of jail.
During which, she was being extremely rude.” (Hasan). The symbolism is showed in this analysis because it goes with how the grandmother thinks she doesn’t have to listen to anyone. This gets in the way of how people see her as a person in society. This symbolizes her as women in a time when African Americans let alone women we suppressed and looked down on because of the features that she carries.
Lastly, setting is shown a good amount and plays a big role in the short story. “They stopped at The Tower for barbecued sand- wiches. The Tower was part stucco and part wood filling station and dance hall set in a clearing outside of Timothy.” (O’Connor). This goes with setting because it gives the reader a feel about what is going on in the story and how all the characters are reacting to everything and everyone around them.
“Dave stood, head down, twisting his feet in the dirt.” (Jordan). This particular quote begins to show the setting because the people were making the setting seem sad. In conclusion, this story showed me how much African American people were treated so much differently than whites. The story also showed me that one shouldn’t judge someone and try and give to know them because no one ever knows how somebody is going to react to the wrong comment.
“A Good Man is hard to Find” can be analyzed by using character, symbols, and setting. Someone could learn from this story is to make sure not to judge people and give them a chance to see what could happen. Works Cited “Brainy Quotes: Flannery O’Connor.” BrainyQuotes. 19 April 2011 ;brainyquotes.com;. Hasan, Zaheya. “A Good Man is Hard to Find.” Teenink. 19 April 2011 ;www.
teenink.com;. Jordan, Michael M. “Falnner O’Connor’s Writing: A Guide for the Perplexed.” 2005. elibrary.
bigchalk.com. O’Connor, Flannery. A Good Man is Hard to Find. London, 1955.