The short story “A Good Man Is Hard to Find” follows a family on vacation with their grandmother to Florida and the trouble they face with the Misfit. The grandmother is the central character of the story, and is described in the opening paragraphs as wearing clothing that does not match the rest of the family’s fashion. O’Connor gives the impression of a snobby, picky, and bossy old lady who is to be respected. Through her dialogue, dress, and vocabulary, readers can tell that the grandmother is from the deep south. The broken English and accents used by the characters, such as the Misfit’s use of “Nome” and the grandmother’s misspelling of words, are meant to give a southern feel to the family. As the story progresses, it becomes clear that the grandmother is pretentious, snobby, rude, ignorant, and distasteful. It is only after she realizes that “telling others about ourselves depends on what we think they think we ought to be like” that she finds her true selfhood. O’Connor uses the grandmother to show innocence, yet guilt, and to connect the tale to finding selfhood.
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