Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate August 2001

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Norman T. Taylor, Jr.

English 102 EA1 November 14, 2001 The Free Gift of Redemption "A Good Man Is Hard To Find" written by Flannery O'Connor is a story of self-exaltation and redemption. In order to truly understand this story, the reader must do some research in order to know the author because in order to more effectively interpret literature; one must know the author especially in Flannery O'Connor's works. Ms. O'Connor was born in 1925 in Savannah, Georgia where she lived until age 12, and then her family moved to Milledgeville, Georgia where she spent most of her life. It is also very important to note that she was a devout Catholic who was educated in a parochial school system. So up to this point, we are able to see that she is a spiritual woman who was born in "the proper south". A very interesting fact about her religious beliefs is that the South was known to be a predominantly Protestant area.

This may explain why she chooses to get the story's message across to the reader the way she does. After reading a few of her works, it is clear to see that she chooses a religious message and redemption as the theme for her writings. But rather than use a peaceful way to relay the message, as Catholicism does; she uses the Protestant method of punishment.

The story opens with the grandmother not wanting to go to Florida for vacation with her son Bailey and his family. She reads in the paper about a criminal on the loose who calls himself "The Misfit" and goes on to say that she could not answer her conscience if something happened. The way the grandmother acts here gives the reader the feeling that Grandmother is the "do no...