How many individuals do you come across each day whom considers themselves to be a righteous individual? Do you agree or disagree with this individuals judgement of their own character? Frequently a person might conceal behind his/her religious beliefs as a justification for the actions made in every day life. Maybe some individuals might choose that dedicating sufficient favorable actions can some how counteract their negative actions, enabling them to consider themselves a righteous person. In Flannery O’Connors story “A Great Male Is Difficult To Find”, the author challenges her readers to consider what it truly means to be a “great man” and why these qualities are so difficult to discover in an individual.
As the story opens we are presented to a granny who is having an external conflict with her family over the holiday place they have chosen. The grandma thinks really extremely of herself and her choices, so she begins to try and control her household into agreeing with her on going to a various location.
The author hints to us that the grandmother thinks extremely of herself by the method that she descibes her clothes to the reader. She selects her clothing based upon her ideas that “In case of an accident, anybody seeing her dead on the highway would understand at the same time that she was a lady.”(Paragraph 12) The reader can only wonder why such a self exemplary lady might be so concentrated on the viewpoints of others even in her thoughts of afterlife. The grandma also selfishly brings along her cat in secrecy, in spite of the fact that her kid Bailey “didn’t like to arrive at a motel with a feline”. (Paragraph 10) She puts herself to such significance that she does not think that she needs to listen to her sons demands, but rather do what she wants to.
She scolds the children about the way they act in the car and claims that she herself would not act because manner, which likewise symbolizes the truth that she considers herself as a righteous individual. Immediately after scolding the kids for their actions, the grandma explains a child to the family with the words “Oh look at the adorable little pickaninny” (Paragraph 18) which informs the reader that she is explaining the kid by his/her skin color. She even uses the childs skin color to pass a judgement that as a “little nigger” he most likely did not own any britches.(Paragraph 19-20) The author uses this as more evidence to the reader that the grandma considers herself as exceptional to others, just by her skin color. She continues throughout the story to try to control her family with stories of a big house that she wanted to return and go to. The more she informs of the house, the more fired up the children end up being about going to it and they start to complain to their parents. The grandma is pleased with this and continues to feed the fire she has integrated in the children, despite the reality that she understands it is triggering distress to her kid. The elderly woman even provides little ideas stating that the trip to the house would be extremely “academic for them” (Paragraph 53) in an effort to say anything so that she can to get her own way.
After she has finally got her way, the granny finally understands that she was so caught up in what she wanted that she had not correctly kept in mind the area of your house. At the realization that somebody like her has actually made a mistake, she becomes embarrassed and her feet leap up. This is when we see another among her selfish actions come back to haunt her, considering that the cat becomes startled and triggers the grandmothers kid Bailey to lose control of the automobile. Through her horrible actions, the grandmother has triggered her household to wreck their car and put them all in danger but yet she has no remorse to apologize for her mistakes. The reader Bailey’s wrath would not come down on her at one time”. (Paragraph 67) Even with all of the problem she has actually triggered the senior woman is so concerned with the belief that she is an excellent individual that she utilizes it as a justification for her misbehaviors.
It is not till the household is faced with a bad guy who calls himself “The Misfit” that the truth behind the granny truly comes to the surface area. The granny immediately acknowledges him and ignorantly calls him out on his identity, which puts her household into more danger than in the past. Her boy Bailey is so upset with his mother at this moment that he “states something to his mom that surprised even the kids” (Paragraph 85) and it ends up being even more apparent that the female has actually been provocing mad feelings from her family for some time now. Even the children have made remarks towards the female throughout the story, which is a terrible blow when even your own household has negative sensations towards you. Throughout all of the actions from her family, the grandmother still continues to act in her typical selfish methods.
As soon as she is dealt with up against The Misfit, the grandma begins trying to control him just as she has done to her family. She attempts to encourage him into trusting that she thinks him to be a “excellent guy at heart”.(Paragraph 91) At this moment the grandma has actually constantly had the ability to control those around her, however The Misfit shows to be not so easily deceived by her. The granny even begins to try and utilize her faith as a method to encourage The Misfit into letting her go. The elderly female makes the remark to him that “If you would pray … Jesus would help you”(Paragraph 119), but The Misfit can quickly see through what the grandma pretends to be. The grandma has always thought herself to be an exemplary individual, however she has not shown herself to be one through her actions. She has not pointed out the Lord till she is confronted with a circumstance of specific desperation and this is apparent to The Misfit. He has never ever declared to be a devout person however it is shown in his talks of Jesus with the woman that he has actually thought long and hard about faith. There is a twinkle of hope in the ideas of The Misfit that permit the reader to think that, in the smallest minute, he might in fact be a great individual if given the ideal guidance. The Misfit seems as though hes considering religious beliefs at one point, but the granny pulls him away from it more with her insencerity. She goes from speaking to him about counting on Jesus and starts offering him money in exchange for her life, which is something that crushes all possible visions of her being a truly devoted woman.
Though he can see her for who she is, the thoughts of religious beliefs can still be seen bouncing around in his head a bit and this becomes apparent to her grandmother as well. She sees that there is a possibility of an excellent individual in the guy who she described previously as a “criminal” whom she would not take her kids in the direction of. (Paragraph 1) This makes the granny open her eyes to her own life and she starts to realize that she doesn’t need to be the selfish individual she has been, however her realization comes far too late. In the line “She would of been a great woman if it had actually been someone there to shoot her every minute of her life” (Paragraph 141) we see that The Misfit saw the difference in her in her last moments, however that these last moments might never ever conceal the evidence of who she had always been in the past.
The grandmother spent method excessive time in her life concentrating on what an excellent person she was, instead of reviewing the actions she took. The irony of the story is that there is more excellent seen in the sincerety of The Misfit, instead of in the grandmother who thought so extremely of herself. Any person can claim to be an exemplary person and control those around them into believing this to be true. Although in the end, it all boils down to the evaulation of the actions that a person makes as to whether they can genuinely be categorized as a great individual. It is evident by the end of the story that a “good guy” is hard to find merely since a lot of individuals are walking around declaring to be one themselves.