In the short story “A Good Man Is Hard To Find” by O’Connor, the grandmother who is the central character in the story comes out as a person who is self centered. She does not listen to the other family members’ suggestion but wants them to follow her opinions. She wants her family to go on a vacation to Tennessee rather than to Florida. She points out that it would not be safe for the family to travel to Florida as there is a former convict on the loose and he is said to be around the state of Florida. The grandmother whom Flannery does not name feels that she is ethically better than other people due to the fact that she is a woman.
She constantly judges other people. She asserts that her principles serve as her driving force as for instance she tells her son that her principles would never permit her to take her grandchildren in a place where the Misfit was likely to be. She condemns Bailey’s wife for failing to take the children to a location where they would widen their minds and matches up to the young woman’s face to a cabbage. She reprimands Wesley for having a lot of admiration for his home district Georgia.
She passes judgment on the absence of integrity by people living in the current world. She pompously puts on her cautiously chosen dress and hat convinced that to be a lady is the most significant feature one that only she treasures. The grandmother does not however look seriously within her to examine her own insincerity, deceitfulness, and self-centeredness (Brawner pg. 95).
The principles that she brings into play at the start of the story is suitably quiet when she hides the cat in the car, cheats the children about the undisclosed panel, and chooses not to disclose the error she had made regarding the location of the house. When Misfit destroys the family one by one, she never at any point pleads with him to spare her son or her grandchildren. Instead she pleads for her own life since she could not fathom the thought of the gang leader wishing to kill a lady. The old lady is fully convinced that Misfit will appreciate and value her ethical policy as if it would matter to him in spite of his criminal habits (Brawner pg. 101). She attempts to pull him to her side by swearing to him that he is a fine person and although he consents to her opinion, he does not regard it as an excuse for not killing her.
The only instant in her existence that she becomes conscious of her mistakes is when she is about to die. She finally understands that she is not better but imperfect just like everybody else. She eventually demonstrates the skill to be considerate and sympathetic when she reaches out to the Misfit and calls him “one of my own” (Frederick pg.78). This for her is an instant of awareness which follows her demise. The grandmother values worldly things than she does to love and associations when she declares that she should have married Mr. Teagarden since he was a “gentleman” and rich (Frederick pg.125). This is also demonstrated when she announces that she would give all her wealth to Jesus in order to receive salvation.
It is due to the grandmother’s persistence that made her family wander away from the main road looking for some fake lost fortune. The author has used the grandmother to show the absence of value and obedience in the American civilization. She is a symbol of the ethics of the Victorian traditions. She advises her grandchildren that during her era, children valued their local states as well as of their parents. She continues to say that people did right then.