A brilliant storyteller during the mid-twentieth century, Flannery O'Connor wrote intriguing tales of morality, ethics and religion. A Southern writer, she wrote in the Southern Gothic style, cataloging thirty-two short stories; the most well known being “A Good Man is Hard to Find.”
Mary Flannery O'Connor was born on March 25, 1925, in Savannah, Georgia. Raised in her mother's family home in Milledgeville, Georgia, she was the only child of Regina Cline and Edward Francis O'Connor, Jr. Although little is known about Mrs. O'Connor's early childhood, in Melissa Simpson's biography on O'Connor, Simpson states that O'Connor attended St. Vincent's Grammar School in Savannah where she would rarely play with the other children and spent most her time reading by herself. After fifth, grade, O'Connor transferred; to Sacred Heart Grammar School for Girls; some say the reason for the transfer was that it was a more prestigious school than the former. She later enrolled in Peabody High School in 1938, entered an accelerated program at Georgia State Collge for Women in the summer of 1942, and in 1946 she was accepted into the Iowa Writer's Workshop at the University of Iowa (4 Simpson). According to American Decades, O'Connor earned her masters degree from the University of Iowa with six short-stories that were published in the periodical Accent (n pg Baughman).
After college, O'Connor's writing career continued. During her brief career as a writer, O'Connor contracted lupus in which she ultimately died. In Short Stories for Students, Kathleen Wilson states that while O’Connor was writing her first novel Wise Blood, which she started while attending the prestigious Yaddo writers’ colony, she suffered her first attack of lupus, a chronic, autoimmune disease. Wilson continues, telling how O’Connor wrote steadily through the 1950’s and her first novel Wise Blood was published in 1952. O’Connor would go on and win numerous awards, including three O. Henry Memorial Awards, a Ford Foundation grant and two honorary doctor’s degrees. Wilson finishes by telling of O’Connor’s death on August 3, 1964, at the age of 39 (Wilson 98). According to the St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture “O'Connor's work, though scant, generates the kind of critical attention that makes her, along with William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, Walker Percy, Truman Capote, and Tennessee Williams, one of the most notable figures in Southern literature” (n pg).
“A Good Man is Hard to Find” is a short-story from Flannery O'Connor's collection of the same name. ---- suggests that the story is an excellent introduction to O'Connor's fiction. Arguing that it exemplifies all the elements of O'Connor's work, it combines humor and horror, grotesque characters and that the characters are given an opportunity to accept God's grace (105). Elisabeth Piedmont-Marton sums up the story, describing it “...as a satire of a typical family vacation...”, further saying that “...it becomes a tale of coldblooded...