The fiction of Flannery O’Connor is known for its connection to the concept of grace. Its representation is widely discussed and compared to the Christian notions expressed in the Bible (Galloway 13). Nevertheless, there are specific peculiarities in the way the author employs this technique to demonstrate problems. Hence, a moment of grace included in O’Connor’s works reflects the sociological and psychological issues of her characters.
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This technique is explained by O’Connor’s fascination with the ideas of Carl Jung that had a significant influence on her stories. Their concept of grace is related to his description of individuation promoting one’s development (Sheridan). From this perspective, this notion’s spiritual and psychological components are combined in the efforts to save people from the darkness of their unconscious (Sheridan). Hence, the psychological orientation of the author’s works is conditional upon their connection to the well-known concepts.
A moment of grace as a central theme of O’Connor’s stories refers to the sociological aspects of life highlighting society’s role in becoming humane. One of the examples of their influence is the story “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” where its characters face such problems as family disorganization, crime, and social status (Hani 348). From this perspective, their moments of grace were connected to the lessons they learned along the way and their ultimate success in finding solutions to the specified social problems.
In conclusion, the works of Flannery O’Connor are characterized by the inclusion of the concept of grace based on psychological and sociological notions. They allow tracing the way her characters become well-functioning individuals in contrast to the people with particular problems they used to be before. Thus, their moments of grace can be viewed as a result of their transformation in life.
Galloway, Bella. “Violence as a Vessel of Grace: The Fiction of Flannery O’Connor.” WHEATON WRITING: A Journal of Academic Essays, vol. 5, 2020, pp. 13–15, Web.
Hani, Mohamad. “Analysis of Social Problem in a Good Man Is Hard to Find by Flannery O’Connor.” English Community Journal, vol. 3, no. 1, 2019, pp. 342–349, Web.
Sheridan, Joshlin. “On Symbols and Shadows: Flannery O’Connor’s Jungian Concepts of Grace.” Criterion: A Journal of Literary Criticism, vol. 10, no. 2, 2017, 12, Web.
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