OConnors a good man is hard to find.





O’Connor’s ‘a good man is hard to find’.

The Gospel of Mark shows how much attachment man has for material things and the obstacles this attachment presents in his quest for moral uprightness and eternal life. The case in mind is that of a morally upright man who approaches Jesus and requests him to explain what else he can do to since he obeys all Ten Commandments. Jesus knowing the implication of material possession even to the morally upright and righteous, instructs him to rid himself of all his material possessions since these are bound to erode his morals.

O’Connor’s story has a similar thematic approach only it goes on to prove that indeed a good man is hard to find. The Misfit was wrongly accused of murdering his father and faces serious legal action, which he chooses to escape from since he feels to be innocent. The only problem Bailey’s mother had not factored in her bid to avoid a confrontation with this evil man is reflected in the Gospel of Mark. Here, Jesus tried to show how even the most upright and righteous of men was susceptible to the machinations of material things in the world, hence his requesting the man who had approached him to sell everything and follow him.

In advancing the themes of good and evil, O’Connor uses two very different characters. . The grandmother represents society’s righteous and The Misfit shows the exact opposite. Here, we find how O’Connor tries to exemplify the righteous by demonstrating a caring loving attitude towards family and kin, exemplified by the grandmother’s futile attempt at trying to direct the family away from danger, as. Again, her caring and loving attitude is demonstrated in how she cannot bear to leave the cat, Pitty Sing’ in the house alone while there is a convict on the loose. This theme is shown all the way to her tragic end when in act of compassion she touched The Misfit, whose reaction was to kill the begging old woman. Although critics argue on this act of compassion being the cause of her death (Gentry, p. 36, 2006), it seems to be the case. In his actions, The Misfit himself advances the theme of evil by killing a whole family with his accomplices. He won’t even listen to an old woman who braves impending death by touching him in an act of compassion, instead shooting her severally while uttering sarcastic remarks.

This story shows the multifaceted modern man who presents himself as immensely righteous while in truth being not. Today many people act and pretend to be morally upright while in real sense they are far from that. Acts of violence and corruption best exemplify this pretence that seems to know no boundaries, even afflicting those expected by society to uphold righteousness. The failure of man in moral uprightness is best exemplified in Priests accused of molesting young children, fathers accused of murdering whole countries and countries going up in arms against less able countries all show how ‘ a good man is hard to find’ indeed. Spirituality is especially rife with examples of how modern man has sunk beneath the expectations of his beliefs as illustrated by all the adultery, murder, lying and backbiting as well as theft and sexual perversion. Many will openly claim to follow the scriptures of their faith and act in a contradictory manner.

Works cited.

Gentry, M. (2006). Flannery O’connor’s Religion of the Grotesque. Mississipi: Univ. Press of Mississippi.

Eder, K. (2011). Flannery O’Connor, “A Good Man Is Hard To Find” – an Analysis. Munich: GRIN Verlag.