grandmother “Would have been a good woman, there had been somebody there to shoot her every minute of her life.” After a short conversation between Bobby Lee and the Misfit here Bobby Lee states that killing is fun, the Misfit replies, “there is no pleasure in life” this statement contradicted what he said earlier in the story. The author wanted to show the changes that the characters made. First the grandmother and then the Misfit to follow. Because of their dialogue, the grandmother, right before her death, showed some true unselfish sensitivity to the Misfit before he shoots her. The Misfit now realizes that killing is not as fun as he stated earlier when he said that there is, “No pleasure but meanness.” The second element of the short story is characterization. Characterization is a step-by-step process that is used to highlight and explain the details about a character in a story. In “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” there are six characters that Flannery O’Conner discussed in detail, The Grandmother, The Misfit, Bailey, The Children’s Mother, June Star, and John Wesley. The first character that we encounter is The Grandmother. She is judgmental and selfish. She longs for a time when she thinks things were better. This sentiment is expressed when she speaks with Red Sammy Butts. She lives with her son, Bailey, and his family and is often critical of them. While she makes some attempts to engage with the family, they show little interest and little respect for her. Her judgments of them leave them uninterested in her and her opinions. When the family is approached by The Misfit, the grandmother is concerned about her safety and shows little care for Bailey and his family. The grandmother performs one genuine act of concern in the story, and it is her last action.
Dohman 3 Second is the Misfit. He is a violent, escaped convict. He is a man of contradictions. Despite his background, he blushes from embarrassment when Bailey uses foul language. While instructing Hiram and Bobby Lee to take family members away to be killed, he apologizes for not wearing a shirt. He compliments his parents, yet he killed his father. He acknowledges killing his father, but he does not take complete responsibility for his actions. He compares himself to Jesus but says he does not believe. He gets into a soul-searching philosophical discussion with the grandmother, but after shooting her he says she could have been a good woman if she were threatened with death every minute of her life.
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- Winter '15
- Mrs. Mikkelson
- A Good Man Is Hard to Find, Short story, Bailey