Irony in a Good Man Is Hard to Find

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• Dramatic irony occurs when a character in a literary work fails to perceive what is obvious to the reader (or, in the case of a play, the audience). The most famous example of dramatic irony in literature occurs in Sophocles' play, Oedipus Rex, when he fails to realize what is clear to the audience: that a traveler he kills on a road is his own father and that a woman he marries is his own mother. In "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," Bailey's mother views herself as a proper southern lady—genteel, upright, wise. But to the reader, her actions reveal her as another person. She primps excessively, lies, uses racist language, begrudges America's goodwill contributions to postwar Europe, and foolishly blurts out that she recognizes The Misfit. Not until the story takes a tragic turn does she begin to realize that she is not who she thinks she is. Situational irony occurs when a development in a story is the opposite of what the reader expects. In "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," this type of irony occurs when an evil man, The Misfit, causes Bailey's mother to see herself for what she is, a sinner. Her enlightenment allows her to redeem herself by casting off her selfishness and reaching out to the deranged killer. When he shoots her, she dies with a smile on her face, happy that she had become a good woman before it was too late. In effect, The Misfit's evildoing leads to the old woman's redemption. Message? What makes a person good? What makes a person evil? Literary elements? -- symbolism, foreshadowing, characterization, irony, conflict Use a header and a title and a bibliography and parenthetical citation with quotes! The Use of Irony in “A Good Man is Hard to Find” [Intro] Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man is Hard to Find” uses irony to ____ the concepts of good and evil. The contrast between [Examples of situational irony and what they achieve.] [Examples

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