Foreshadowing: ‘a Good Man is Hard to Find’

Flannery O’ Connor, was a strict Catholic from Georgia. O’ Connor often displayed a sense of spiritual corruption within the characters in most of her stories. One of O’ Connor’s well known stories, ‘A Good Man Is Hard to Find,’ has a lot of imagery and foreshadows toward the characters who sadly meet never make it to Florida, yet instead meet their bloody end to a man named The Misfit. The grandmother was the one sign of foreshadowing within the novel as she stated on the first page. There are also shown foreshadowing in the graveyard with there being 5 to 6 graves. The last sign of foreshadowing shown was as they were walking around they saw 6 columns.

The Grandmother was the first to do any foreshadowing within the novel. She stated to John Wesley and June Star “Yes and what would you do if that fellow, the Misfit, caught you?” Even though she warning of the Misfit, her activities various signs of foreshadowing of their inevitable encounter with the Misfit. The grandmother warned about the Misfit in the first paragraph of the story: ‘`Here this fellow calls himself the Misfit is loose from the federal pen and headed toward Florida and you read here what it says he did to these people.” This was the first sign of an obvious Foreshadowing within the novel itself. The grandmother is very hypocritical when it comes to following through with what she says or doing what she states to other people as she was the one who said Florida was dangerous. As the one who states such valuable information to the people you love you still disregard it and go to Florida to avoid being left behind.

There were about six graves fenced in, which was a major indication of foreshadowing. John Wesley asked about where the plantation was, the grandmother replied, ‘Gone with the Wind,’ which was foretelling their demise. Red Sammy also narrated about ‘Two fellers come in here last week’ in an ‘old beat up car.’ These people were the Misfit’s goons, and they were offered free gasoline from Red Sammy’s store, probably because of his fear that he was dealing with notorious killers. Red Sammy’s wife also gave a warning by saying, ‘I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if he didn’t attack this place right here.’ This was a self-explanatory caution signal gave by the store owners which was ignored. The family was in a town named as ‘Tombsboro,’ which name itself was a sign of foreshadowing.

When the family finally meets the Misfit, he arrives in a hearse like vehicle which is foreshadowing death. The hearse is used to bring move coffins from place to place, while the misfit is considered the bringer of death within the story as all the death seems to come from him. Red Sammy tried to warn the family that the misfit may be in the area as the name of his restaurant is also the name of a card that represents warning and Sammy let two guys who were the misfit’s goons fill up gas on credit.

This short story has many signs of foreshadowing within it that if known by the family could have been essential. The grandmother was the base off all the foreshadowing by talking about what if they ran into the misfit, which later occurs. There is also the graves and columns which just so happen to have the exact number for each of the family members. These are just a few of the examples of the foreshadowing that happens within the book of things that take place to the family until their death which I feel was undeserved.

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Foreshadowing: 'a good man is hard to find'. (2021, Mar 17). Retrieved October 7, 2022 , from

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