Interpretation of "Good Country People" by Flannery O'Connnor Through Imagery/Symbolism.

1280 words 6 pages
In Flannery O'Connor's short story "Good Country People" Flannery shows and teaches us, you cannot judge a book by its cover, not even a bible. Though Hulga seems as if she has a heart as cold as ice, you learn how vulnerable she is. You also encounter a character named Manley Pointer. Who puts on a facade of being a good country boy, and a Christian who sells bibles. Symbolism plays a major role in the way that these characters are seen through out the story and how they perceive themselves. Multiple objects' presented in the story initially may be props. The reader soon discovers these props to be extremely important, and necessary to how the story unfolds. These props symbolically represent the personalties of the characters who …show more content…

She states the following: "Flannery O'Connor's Southern landscapes are populated by freaks, misfits, shrewd con artists, murderers, and sometimes just plain ordinary country people. All her characters are flawed in some way–most are spiritually and morally corrupt. However, the greatest flaws can be found in those characters with physical impairments; bodily handicaps symbolize the greater disabilities of the intellect, the heart, the soul."

"Joy-Hulga's physical afflictions–her heart condition, her poor eyesight, and her artificial leg–symbolize her emotional, intellectual, and spiritual impairments." Manley Pointer puts Hulga into a position where she feels in control. She took all his shame away and turned it into something useful. She believes that she is manipulating Manley, but it is him who is doing the manipulating. Hulga lets her guard down because she feels in such great control and becomes comfortable with Manley. She is being manipulated from the start, and no amount of education can stop the fact that she doesn't see it coming. As soon as she admits to loving Manley Pointer, he sees the opening to completely destroy the facade she worked so hard to create her whole life. Before Hulga even knows it, her glasses are off and Manley has removed her leg. Physically she is broken down, but the real damage is done mentally. She knows that all control of the situation is out of her hands, and she