The Grandmother in “A Good Man Is Hard to Find”
“A Good Man Is Hard To Find” is a short story written by Flannery O’Conner and published in 1953. It tells a story of a family on their trip to Florida who happen to be found accidentally by The Misfit, a serial killer who has just escaped a federal prison and is on his way to Florida as well. The grandmother is the central character in the story who becomes the only family member killed by The Misfit, compared to the other family member who were killed by The Misfit’s companions. Her character is given most of the attention, and we know about her from the inside and the outside more than any other character. The grandmother’s character is gradually revealed through the events that take place…show more content… One of the remarks she makes in her attempt to do what she desires to do, which is not going to Florida, is to tell Bailey, her son, the news about The Misfit. “Here this fellow that calls himself The Misfit is aloose from the Federal Pen and headed toward Florida … I wouldn 't take my children in any direction with a criminal like that aloose in it. I couldn 't answer to my conscience if I did” (3). The last sentence reveals to us indirectly that she is a conscientious person. As a result, she appears as a good person, since having a conscience is a trait of goodness in people’s hearts. Also, since she does not want to go in the direction The Misfit is heading in order to protect her children, we are told indirectly that she cares about her family, probably more than herself.
The narrative then tells us more about the grandmother’s character by allowing us to see her dialogue with her son and his wife. They respond to the grandmother’s concern with disregards and silence. “Bailey didn 't look up from his reading” tells us that he does not care about the grandmother’s suggestions to go to east Tennessee instead of Florida. His indifference shows us that the grandmother is not taken seriously. Therefore, her weakness is seen as good-heartedness in comparison to the son and his wife who appear as cold and passive. Until this point, the grandmother can be perceived