Good Country People, by Flannery O'Connor

1499 WordsFeb 22, 20186 Pages
The Modernist South “Good Country People” is a short story written by the Modernist writer Flannery O’Connor. According to The Critics, “Good Country People” is a bildungsroman where the main character, Joy, experiences a brief journey that matures her view of the world. Joy or “Hulga” is a well educated, philosophical woman of thirty-two,but as the story begins, she is portrayed as an immature adult whose maturity level has been stunted due to a childhood accident that left her emotionally scarred and physically disabled. Due to her physical disability ( the loss of her leg), Joy does not have true experience concerning society outside of her home. Her lack of social interaction will become her Achilles’ heel that ultimately teaches her a lesson concerning society and stereotypes. By the end of the story, Joy’s abundance of knowledge is irrelevant when she is conned by Manley Pointer and left immobile in the loft of a barn deep within a forest. Besides being a bildungsroman, O’Connor also incorporates themes of the Modernist movement into this short work such as isolation, alienation, loss of control, and incoherence of the modern world. O’Connor designed the character of Joy to encompass the isolation of the Modernist movement.To distinguish and remove herself from the people around her, Joy seeks a PhD in Philosophy thus creating an educational barrier between her mother, Mrs. Freeman, Glynese, Carramae, and herself. Joy/ Hulga Hopewell has separated herself from
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