Flannery O'connor And William Faulkner's Characters And Morality

1024 words - 4 pages

Flannery O'Connor and William Faulkner's Characters and Morality

Flannery O’Connor and William Faulkner refuse to surrender to the temptation of writing fanciful stories where the hero defeats the villain and everyone lives happily ever after. Instead, these two writers reveal realistic portrayals of death and the downfall of man. Remarkably, O’Connor and Faulkner’s most emotionally degraded characters fail to believe that an omnipotent deity controls their fate. This belief directly correlates to the characters’ inability to follow a strict set of morals or value human life. On the other hand, one might expect Faulkner and O’Connor’s “Christian” characters to starkly contrast the vile heathens who deny the existence of God. However, these characters struggle to follow their own standards of morality.

The southern culture places much value on community, courtesy, and the standard of morality: the Bible. But under this facade of civility lie slanderous gossip, impure motives, and hidden iniquity. Faulkner’s character, Cora Tull, is a prime example of this. Though she openly admits that she has no right to pass judgment on Addie Bundren because, “It is the Lord’s place to judge,” Cora Tull later hypocritically states, “I realized out of the vanity of her heart she (Addie) had spoken sacrilege.” Cora’s desire for Addie’s repentance blinds her from seeing her own sin. On the other hand, Mrs. Turpin, a character in O’Connor’s “Revelation,” struggles with this same sin but in a different manner. Mrs. Turpin appears to politely encounter strangers with kindness but, alas, her kindness is corrupted. Though Mrs. Turpin’s sincere smiles and courteous small talk make her appear to truly care about others around her, the truth is that the words from her mouth do not convey the self centered thoughts of her heart and mind. Finally, a young lady sees through the hypocrisy and rages against Mrs. Turpin, whispering, “"Go back to hell where you belong, you old wart hog." This comment pierces Mrs. Turpin’s very soul and makes her question her way of life. Faced with the concept that she is not the respectable woman she thinks she is, Mrs. Turpin questions God and His plans for her life.

Traditionally, southerners attend church, worship the Lord, and look to their pastors for guidance. In fact, most people tend to place their ministers on a pedestal with a more rigid standard of morality. As sheep following a shepherd, a church follows its pastor with trust and conviction. However, Faulkner makes it clear that even the most prominent and up standing men may have hidden sins. For instance, Whitfield, the town preacher, and Addie Bundren conceal their affair from society. Whitfield longs for forgiveness and states, “I have sinned, O Lord. Thou knowest the extent of my remorse and the will of my spirit.” However,...

Find Another Essay On Flannery O'Connor and William Faulkner's Characters and Morality

The Essex and Hazel Motes in Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor

1809 words - 7 pages The Essex and Hazel Motes in Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor In her 1952 novel Wise Blood, Flannery O'Connor presents Hazel Motes's Essex automobile as a symbol for Hazel himself. The car's dilapidated state corresponds to Motes's own spiritual decay; however, the initial quality of the car's workmanship corresponds to Hazel's Christian upbringing, which he cannot deny in spite of himself. Motes's identification with and reliance upon his

Tone and attitude of "The Life You Save may be Your Own, " Flannery O'Connor

526 words - 2 pages In "The Life You Save may be Your Own," Flannery O'Connor descriptively characterizes the battles within oneself with the characters of Mrs. Crater, Tom Shiftlet, and Lucynell Crater. The realistic and truthful tones of their actions suggest that through personal obstacles and flaws, triumph can be obtain by being truthful. All three characters of the story are realistic and truthful in a different way.Mrs. Crater could be considered the most

Symbolism and Theme in William Faulkner's A Rose for Emily

1472 words - 6 pages Symbolism and Theme in William Faulkner's A Rose for Emily    In William Faulkner's short story "A Rose for Emily," a series of interconnected events collectively represent a single theme in the story. Symbolism is the integral factor involved in understanding the theme. "A Rose for Emily's" dominant theme is the search for love and security, a basic human need which can be met unfavorably in equivocal environments. Faulkner's use of

William Faulkner's Spotted Horses and Mule in the Yard

1288 words - 5 pages William Faulkner's Spotted Horses and Mule in the Yard "Spotted Horses" and "Mule in the Yard" are two short stories by William Faulkner that deal with comedic animal chases. Although both provide entertaining examples of Faulkner's work in very similar settings, on the scale of literary value, "Spotted Horses" rises above "Mule in the Yard" in depth and insight. This superiority is result of both it's narrative style and character

William Faulkner's Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech and its Relevance

654 words - 3 pages William Faulkner's Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech and its Relevance William Faulkner’s Nobel Prize acceptance speech is a dynamic statement that challenges the writer and man to not simply sit around and watch the end of man, but to help man endure and prevail. Faulkner refuses to accept the naturalists theme that human beings are dominated, controlled, and overwhelmed by their environment and nature. He does not accept the end of man, but

William Faulkner's A Rose for Emily and Barn Burning

1207 words - 5 pages Symbolism in William Faulkner's A Rose for Emily and Barn Burning If we compare William Faulkner's two short stories, 'A Rose for Emily' and 'Barn Burning', he structures the plots of these two stories differently. However, both of the stories note the effect of a father¡¦s teaching, and in both the protagonists Miss Emily and Sarty make their own

THE HOLY CONRADICTIONS OF FLANNERY O'CONNOR - A LITERARY OVERVIEW AND ANALYSIS OF FLANNERY O'CONNOR'S USAGE OF SYMBOLISM AND RELIGION In "A GOOD MAN IS HARD TO FIND"

1431 words - 6 pages was quoted for saying this he was referring to authors such as Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, William Faulkner, and of course Flannery O'Connor, the southern catholic raised woman who revolutionized literature with her religious messages poignant in her works. O'Connor used imagery including controversial issues such as prejudice, superficiality of manners, and gods position in a world of sin to assist her in her goal to wow the world into

A Good Man is Hard to Find, by Flannery O'Connor and Hunters in the Snow, by Tobias Wolff

1322 words - 5 pages Ours is a violent world where even the most common folk can find themselves faced with unspeakable horror through little or no intention. In Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” the characters find themselves at the mercy of armed men because of a faulty memory and a few wrong turns. In Tobias Wolff’s “Hunters in the Snow,” a young man winds up shooting his friend in an apparent accident which culminates in a debate between saving

Morality and Injustice Shown in Mark Twain's Characters

1221 words - 5 pages Mark Twain's characters personify the ideas and themes behind his stories. Regarded as one of America's first great writers, his characters have sparked controversy and discussion of morality and injustice of 19th Century society. Born in Florida, Missouri, Twain's family moved to the Hannibal, a small town along the Mississippi where he became associated with tall tales and slavery. His young life would also be stricken with the death of his

A comparison of Julian in "Everything That Rises Must Converge" and Hulga in "Good COuntry People," two stories by Flannery O'Connor

718 words - 3 pages Flannery O'Connor's two narratives, "Everything That Rises Must Converge" and "Good Country People," are different stories presenting different characters, different plots, and different themes; however, both stories revolve around a mother and her child and their relationship. "Everything That Rises Must Converge" concerns Julian and his mother, and "Good Country People" concerns Hulga and her mother. As the two stories unfold, the similarities

Title: The True Characteristics of the Misfit and the Grandmother ; Book: "A Good Man is Hard to Find" ; Author: Flannery O'Connor

652 words - 3 pages about herself. The resolution of the external conflict between the grandmother and the Misfit showed their true colors.During the conversation between the grandmother and the Misfit, he said, "I call myself the Misfit because I can't make all I done wrong fit what all I gone through in punishment." (O'Connor 124) He also said that he wasn't a bad person when he was young but he got sent to a penitentiary. He was accused for killing his father but

Similar Essays

Family Relationships In Fiction Flannery O'connor, William Faulkner, And Andre Dubus

1070 words - 4 pages Family Relationships in FictionFamily relationships played an integral part in the writings of Flannery O'Connor, William Faulkner, and Andre Dubus. Each author showed the importance of family in situations that the characters encountered. In "A Good Man is Hard to Find," O'Connor showed how a fairly average family dealt with a difficult situation. In Faulkner's short story, "Barn Burning," a family struggled to decide which was more important

Flannery O'connor And Her Southern Gothic Style

1509 words - 6 pages transformed by it, principally because they are fixed in their secular or self-centered minds” as stated by Davis Leigh, Professor of Philosophy in Religion, in his journal, Suffering and the Sacred in Flannery O’Connor’s Short Stories. O’Connor acknowledges the role of tranquility in religion and life by announcing through characters its absence or presence. For instance, the grandmother casts the role of most outspoken in “A Good Man is Hard to Find

Flannery O'connor And The Gruesome September 11th

1377 words - 6 pages ENC 1101 HDecember 4, 2002Willin' GraceIn an instant, the gruesome September 11th terrorist attack placed ordinary people trapped on the upper floors of the World Trade Center at the edge of eternity. Some of them made the choice to join hands and leap to their certain death from the upper floors of the twin towering infernos. Perhaps it is at this moment that these people made contact with mystery. Flannery O'connor explores this mystery in her

William Faulkner's The Sound And The Fury

1085 words - 4 pages Heart's Darling: Faulkner and Womanhood      In William Faulkner's The Sound and The Fury, Caddy Compson is the anchor character because Faulkner himself is so obsessed with her that he is unable bring her down off a platform enough to write words for her. Instead, he plays out his obsession by using her brothers as different parts of himself through which to play out his fantasies and interact with her. Faulkner
Spanish Present Tense Regular Verbs Conjugation | Haier Porters Five Forces and BCG Analysis 2018 Free Last updated on: 2018-09-28 | 模拟人生4origin无法运作解决方法