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Equality And Superiority In “A Good Man Is Hard To Find” And “Revelation,” Flannery O’connor

940 words - 4 pages

O’Connor’s main characters, the Grandmother and Mrs. Turpin, both considered themselves superior to those around them. But self-righteousness transforms them into arguably better people when they are confronted with reality. In the stories “A Good Man is Hard to Find” and “Revelation,” Flannery O’Connor uses the theory of hypocrisy in class, race, and religion to show that in the end, we may learn that we are all equal as god’s imperfect creations.
In the story “A Good Man is Hard to Find” the Grandmother is a manipulator who basically controls the fate of her family for her own personal gain. From the beginning of the story, the Grandmother tries to make things go her way. The family wants to take a road trip to Florida, but the Grandmother wants to go to Tennessee to see some relatives. To make it seem like it is for the safety of the family she brings up the news about the Misfit escaping and going towards Florida. She says she “wouldn’t take my children in any direction with a criminal like that aloose in it” (404). The Grandmother really does not expect to meet the Misfit on their trip, but uses the news as a sincere reason. While on the trip, the Grandmother remembers an old plantation she visited when she was a “young lady” (408). She wants to go see it, but she knows Bailey does not want to waste time. She tells the kids that “there is a secret panel … that all the family silver was hidden in” (408). The Grandmother’s self-righteousness then prevents her from speaking up when she realizes that the plantation of her memory is not the one they are visiting now. She remains selfish, fearing that Bailey would reprimand her, so she does not attempt to resolve the situation. By not speaking up, O’Connor makes this an irreversible mistake, because it is because of the Grandmothers silence that the family is in an accident and are then preyed upon by the Misfit.
Mrs. Turpin in the story “Revelation” is very similar to the Grandmother. Both women display hypocritical natures. They assume a place above everyone else, and judge those below them. Both are women of contradictions, for the Grandmother is willing to judge some and not others, Mrs. Turpin considers herself to be a religious woman, but she is also revealed to be a racist. Everywhere that Mrs. Turpin goes, she always checks out the people around her. To figure out their class, she looks at their clothing, shoes, and especially what race they are. Though in her mind, she is always on top, and she always finds ways to put others down, meaning she considers herself superior. When she goes to bed, she thinks of all the classes of people. When...

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