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Summary of A Good Man Is Hard To Find by Flannery OConner

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The family consists of Bailey, his wife and three kids including an infant, and also his mother who is simply referred to as the grandmother. Initially, the grandmother shows reluctance to join in the trip on the apparent pretext of a murderer named Misfit on the loose. However, the next day the entire family embarks on the journey by car. the grandmother even secretly takes her cat. On the way, they stop to eat at a restaurant, where the grandmother gets engaged in a conversation with the owner. They talk about how good men are hard to find as she says people are certainly not nice like they used to be. (O’Connor, 7) Back on the road, the grandmother talks about a plantation nearby. The kids compel the reluctant Bailey to steer the car towards it. But, after a while, the grandmother remembers the plantation is actually in Tennessee. Shocked by her own error, she jerks and her cat which was stowed in a basket jumped onto Bailey’s shoulder. This suddenness was followed by an accident, although no one was killed. As the family waits for help, a car arrives driven by Misfit and his two allies. As the grandmother attempts to engage Misfit in a conversation by telling him he is a good man and ought to lead a good life, the Misfit orders his cronies to take first Bailey and his son, and then his wife and the remaining kids into the woods where they all are killed. The grandmother, now in a state of panic continues to give her sermon on Jesus, and this prompts the Misfit to share some of his own opinions about Jesus. Detecting a moment of vulnerability, the grandmother reaches out to touch him and calls him her son. instantly the Misfit recoils and shoots her three times in the chest. The story ends with the Misfit telling his allies She would’ve been a good woman if it had been somebody there to shoot her every minute of her life. (O’Connor, 23) About the author, O’Connor’s upbringing and her religious heritage had a major impact on her writings. Her parents were devout Roman Catholics whose Irish ancestors immigrated to the US in the nineteenth century. Soon, they adopted the cultural life of Georgia. O’Connor grew up to develop strong Catholic faith, which was well reflected in her story A Good Man Is Hard To Find. Although she was a member of the Catholic patriarchal community, her own family was dominantly matriarchal. Her mother exerted a great influence on her. Nevertheless, her father who was a real estate agent and died when she was only 15, also had a major impact on her since he had always supported her literary talent (Eder, 1). Influence of O’Connor’s religious lifestyle The story is a deep reflection of O’Connor’s Catholic faith, and the subject matter leans on caricature and satire. In this fiction, the author attempts to evoke in the minds of the readers a deep thought about religion, and the influence has been quite destructive for sensitive readers.