dotted outline of a black cat sitting within a basket in front of an older woman wearing a sundress

A Good Man Is Hard to Find

by Flannery O’Connor

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Browning, Preston M., Jr. Flannery O'Connor. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1974. This biography covers the whole of O'Connor's life, from her many moves during her childhood to her illness.

Driggers, Stephen G., Robert J. Dunn, and Sarah E. Gordon. The Manuscripts of Flanneiy O'Connor at Georgia College. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1989. This invaluable depiction of the original manuscripts of O'Connor details the edits within the manuscripts as well as parts left out of her published works.

Farmer, David. Flannery O'Connor: A Descriptive Bibliography. New York: Garland Publishing Company, 1981. Farmer has compiled a didactic explanation of all of O'Connor's work, from small press articles and stories to best-sellers, and includes an explanation of each entry.

Fitzgerald, Sally, ed. The Habit of Being. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1979. This comprehensive compilation of O'Connors letters to friends, editors, and family provides fascinating insight into the mind of a prolific and gifted writer.

Bibliography and Further Reading

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Sources Brinkmeyer, Jr., Robert H. The Art and Vision of Flannery O'Connor, Louisiana State University Press, 1989.

Gordon, Caroline "With a Glitter of Evil," in The New York Times Book Review, June 12,1955, p. 5.

Hendri, Josephine. The World of Flannery O'Connor, Indiana University Press, 1970.

Kirk, Russell, Flannery O'Connor and the Grotesque Face of God," in The World and I, Vol. 2, No 1, January, 1987, pp 429-33

O'Connor, Flannery. Flannery O'Connor: Mystery and Manners, edited by Robert Fitzgerald and Sally Fitzgerald, Fartar, Straus and Giroux, 1957.

Orvell, Miles An Introduction to Flannery O'Connor, University Press of Mississippi, 1991.

Rubin, Jr., Louis D., "Two Ladies of the South," in Critical Essays on Flannery 0 'Connor, edited by Melvin J. Friedman and Beverly Lyon Clark, G. K. Hall & Co., 1985, pp 25-8.

Further Reading Asal, Frederick, Flannery O'Connor: The Imagination of Extremity, University of Georgia Press, 1982. Although the book discusses all her fiction, he devotes a section to "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," a story...

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that ''dramatizes a world radically off balance." Posits that the story is a good example of O'Connor's comic treatment to violent material.

Asal, Frederick, editor, "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," Women Writers, Texts and Contexts, Rutgers University Press, 1993. A useful book for those studying "A Good Man Is Hard to Find." Similar to Norton Critical Editions, this book contains an introduction to the story, the text itself, and many critical essays that explore the story's possible meanings.

Baumgaertner, Jill P., Flannery O'Connor: A Proper Scaring, Harold Shaw Publishers, 1988 Discusses primarily Flannery O'Connor's use of traditional Roman Catholic emblems in her fiction.


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Asals, Frederick. Flannery O’Connor: The Imagination of Extremity. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1982.

Bloom, Harold. Flannery O’Connor. New York: Chelsea House, 1986.

Cash, Jean W. Flannery O'Connor: A Life. University of Tennessee, 2002.

Cheatham, George. “Jesus, O’Connor’s Artificial Nigger.” Studies in Short Fiction 22, no. 4 (Fall, 1985): 475-479. Offers a brief discussion of the symbolism of the statue in “The Artificial Nigger.”

Cheney, Brainard. “Flannery O’Connor’s Campaign for Her Country.” Sewanee Review 72 (Autumn, 1964): 555-558. Cheney’s obituary for O’Connor describes her vocation as a Christian writer.

Getz, Lorine M. Nature and Grace in Flannery O’Connor’s Fiction. New York: Edwin Mellen Press, 1982. Getz attempts to analyze the various actions of grace in O’Connor’s work and the literary devices used to convey them.

Grimshaw, James A., Jr. The Flannery O’Connor Companion. Westport, Conn. Greenwood Press, 1981. An introduction to O’Connor’s writings, both fiction and nonfiction. Features an introductory overview, a chronological survey of O’Connor’s work, a catalog of her fictional characters, illustrations, and two appendices.

Shloss, Carol. Flannery O’Connor’s Dark Comedies: The Limits of Inference. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1980.

Zoller, Peter T. “The Irony of Preserving the Self: Flannery O’Connor’s ‘A Stroke of Good Fortune.’” Kansas Quarterly 9, no. 2 (Spring, 1977): 61-66. Zoller reads “A Stroke of Good Fortune” as a religious parable on the foibles of human pride. Calls the story “the Divine Comedy in modern dress.”


Historical and Social Context