In "Good Country People," how does the major theme pertain to both Hulga and Manley Pointer?

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The main theme of "Good Country People" that pertains to both Hulga and Manley Pointer is the relationship between innocence and experience. Hulga is proud of her experience living on her own in the North, where she applied herself to the pursuit of knowledge and obtained an advanced degree. From that experience, she solidified her sense of superiority to the country people among whom she grew up. Hulga assumes that her vast store of knowledge, including philosophy, has helped her develop a realistic attitude, which seems cynical and antireligious.

These assumptions support Hulga’s attitude toward Manley, whom she lumps together with other country people. She believes that he is innocent and unworldly. Through his job as a Bible salesman, he also embodies the faith that she has cast aside. As it turns out, however, it is Manley who is experienced: he is a sharp con man who uses the Bible sales job as a ruse to gain entry into people’s homes. While the qualities they represent are finally shown as reversed, the rejection of faith is something they have in common.

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