Flannery O’Connor

An interesting post on Flannery O’Connor at University Diaries.  Margaret Soltan, the author of UD, has a grudging respect for O’Connor’s skill as a writer, combined with a deep antipathy to her sense of the connection between grace and violence:

O’Connor believes we’re blind fools blundering through existence in the baddest of bad faith. Bestially dumb to human and spiritual realities, we receive our inevitable epiphanies as cartoonish hammer blows to the head.

Sounds sort of right to me, though I wonder whether O’Connor wouldn’t see this as a Northern misreading of her Southern sensibility.  Anyone know more about O’Connor in this regard?

I learned recently, by the way, that Flannery O’Connor lived for several years in the middle part of the century with the translator Robert Fitzgerald and his wife in my home town of Redding, CT.  In middle school they made a big deal of the fact that Mark Twain lived the last two years of his life in Redding.  Somehow, they never mentioned O’Connor.

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2 Responses to Flannery O’Connor

  1. Standing Eagle says:

    I think the word ‘cartoonish’ is wrong here, because as the blogger says these stories are masterpieces. Other than that I think O’Connor would accede to most of this, and that her humility in doing so would be real.

    Odd that the writer links Hulga and Mrs. Turpin, even though they are clearly opposite characters: in fact Mrs. Turpin has a hostile encounter with a Hulga clone in a waiting room at the beginning of “A Revelation.”

  2. Pingback: University Diaries » An excellent philosophy blog that …

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