Unlikely Christ Essay

653 words - 3 pages

In the story “A Good Man Is Hard to Find,” Flannery O’Connor tells the tale of a family taking a road trip to Florida. Unlike the many trips they had traveled before, this one presented them with a morbid surprise. After a startling, but non-life threatening car accident, the family is assisted by a run away convict by the name “The Misfit”. This criminal and his two counterparts assassinate the entire family not long after his identity is revealed. O’Connor does something very unlikely with this grim character; she correlates him to Christ. Through her narratives and imagery “The Misfit” and Christ are oddly linked together symbolically.
One instance that O’Connor associates Christ and “The Misfit” is through direct conversation in the text between the criminal and the grandmother. When asked about how he acquired his nickname “The Misfit”, he replied, “ ‘because I can’t make what all I done wrong fit what all I gone through in punishment’ ” (O’Connor 274). Christ was persecuted for crimes he had not committed and was put to death. The Misfit indicates that his sentences did not correlate to the crimes he had committed, making his punishment unjust. The Misfit also describes being in the prison as being “buried alive”, looking in all directions seeing nothing but concrete boundaries (O’Connor 273). Christ was buried in a tomb after his death sentence. The Misfit and Christ were both placed in these “tombs” as a result of being convicted of crimes.
O’Conner goes on to connect the character to Christ by describing the convict’s characteristics through the eyes of the grandmother. While observing “The Misfit”, the grandmother notes his glasses. She characterized him wearing “silver-rimmed spectacles that gave him a scholarly look” (O’Connor 271). For a criminal to take on the appearance of someone with wisdom is an odd observation. Much like Christ though, he appeared to be very wise to those who saw him...

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