Books and Movies Reviews

Characterization of The Grandmother and the Misfit in A Good Man is Hard to Find

The Characterization of the Grandmother and the Misfit
In thefirst paragraph of Flannery O'Connor's short story, "A Good Man Is Hard to
Find", the grandmother isintroducedtrying to change a planned family trip to Florida
with her son, Bailey and his family.It is the night before the trip, and grandmother is
"seizingat every chance to change Bailey's mind." (p.465).The grandmother is the
central character of the story, and the family is rather a bland, generic family. The
children are portrayed as disrespectful brats, but are a humorous aspect to the story. The
family is a typical nuclear family of the fifties, who appear to be disconnected not only to
each other, but also to any form of family values.
In thefirst paragraph, grandmother introduces us to the character, the Misfit, as she
reads from the newspaper, "Here is this fellow that calls himself The Misfit is aloose
from the Federal pen and headed toward Florida". She is trying to manipulate the plans of
the trip by pointing this out to her son, Bailey."Bailey didn't look up from his reading so
she wheeled around then and faced the children's mother,". This is thefirst introduction
to the mother in the story, who appears throughout the story to be indifferent to
everything going on around her. She does however get a reaction from the children, June
Star and John Wesley, as they challenge her to stay home if she wants to.The children's
disregard to their grandmother's feelings is ignored by both of the parents, and allows a
glimpse of the grandmother's point of view.
Thefirst hint ofunsettling just below the surface of this story, is when grandmother is
thefirst one in the car the next morning, wearing what seems to be her best clothing. "the
grandmother had on a navy blue straw sailor hat with a bunch of white viole…