Analysis of Two Short Stories
Analysis of Two Short Stories
Introduction and Setting
The story ‘A Good Man Is Hard to Find’ was set in Georgia, but the family is located in an unclear city. The story progresses as the family travels through several spots such as the old plantations and the barbeque places. The rest of the story takes place in a ditch next to a tall forest after the family car crashed. The story ‘Love in L.A.’ is placed on the expressway in Los Angeles. The short story is about an accident that happens to Jake because he was daydreaming while driving. To avoid any further confrontations and legal implications, Jake tries to solve the problem by flirting with the driver of the knocked vehicle. Both stories are about people who start their journeys safe and end up in trouble and problems. The similarity within literary styles among different authors is a common phenomenon that allows analysts to compare the two or more publications extensively with the intention of bringing out the themes, styles and devices used in the works.
In ‘Love in L.A’, Jake is painted as a reckless, self centered and indolent protagonist. This is displayed when he knocks Mariana’s vehicle while daydreaming on the expressway. Jake showed aspects of dishonesty by offering Mariana incorrect information about his insurance details, mobile number, and home address. The explanation for this behavior is to avoid the consequences that would have accompanied the accident he caused when he knocked Mariana’s car. In the story, Mariana is the antagonist. She took the information offered to him by Jake as being authentic with the intention of being friends with him. In ‘A Good Man Is Hard to Find’, the grandmother is painted as a controlling woman. This is seen when she attempted to alter the Baileys’ plans using subtle means (Dagoberto, 2004). Bailey came up as being very passive as he agrees to his mother’s demands to stop at the plantation house. He was also unable to stop his mother from causing a commotion. Red Sammy Butts displayed honesty, and this was picked up by the old woman who completely trusted him. The two children appeared audacious as is evident from their interest in visiting the secret passages in the house (Flannery, 1992).
The highway in ‘Love in L.A.’ symbolized the opportunity to experience unrestricted and extensive freedom in a way that Jake desired, and this made him fantasize while driving. The dream vehicle was also symbolic of the manner in which he exercised his freedom, keeping in mind that he had an accident while driving it (Flannery, 1992). In ‘A Good Man is Hard to Find’, the tossing of the old woman’s hat was symbolic of the manner she discarded her moral code which in itself was mistaken (Dagoberto, 2004). This is demonstrated when she adorns in a way she would be easily identified as a woman in the event of an accident. ‘Toomsboro’ town could have been symbolically used to represent a ‘tomb’ where the family would ultimately meet their demise. The choice of the bandits’ car was also symbolic in that it took the shape and color of a black hearse instead of the usual names like Ford, Cadillac or Buick.
In ‘A Good Man is Hard to Find’, the dominant theme was the struggle between good and evil. Here, there existed an altercation with a shallow logic of righteousness and a wicked individual. She takes on decency just to appear upright, with the proper manners while when she met the Misfits; they admitted and accepted her rightful nature. In this story, the author brought out the character of people hiding their true natures for social purposes (Dagoberto, 2004). In ‘Love in L.A.’, the major theme was infatuation with oneself. This is displayed when Jake was obsessed with himself and his vehicle. The writer demonstrated the people’s nature to be constantly greedy in life (Flannery, 1992).
In ‘Love in L.A.’, the author brought out the tone of the persona, Jake. The writer could be an honest citizen who in the past struggled with being a dishonest person. In ‘A Good Man Is Hard to Find’, the general tone applied played an essential role in building the scheme of the narrative that was based on the intolerant environment particularly during the publishing of the account.
The heading of the story, ‘A Good Man Is Hard to Find’ was ironical in that the grandmother referred to the bandits as respectable men while they were murderers. Irony was also manifested in ‘Love in L.A’ as the relationship was short lived and lacked genuine love. Jake was consumed in himself rather than being in love with Mariana (Flannery, 1992).
In ‘Love in L.A’, Jake lacked proper morals. After knocking Miranda’s car, he went on to deceive her by offering wrong personal information (Flannery, 1992). Jake was also self-centered and did not care for the welfare of others. In ‘A Good Man is Hard to Find’, the grandmother lacked the qualities to be considered a good person as she was deceitful and vain. This scenario was replicated with the Misfit who saw himself as perfect while being a killer (Dagoberto, 2004).
I have realized there are many ways to express love. From, the story, it is evident that people have different opinions. While Jake was absorbed in himself and his car, the grandmother was in love with her image and people’s perception of her conduct. This offered a moral teaching that people should understand and always think about the welfare of others before considering their idiosyncratic interests. The similarity within literary styles among different authors is a common phenomenon that allows analysts to compare the two or more publications extensively with the intention of bringing out the themes, styles and devices used in the works.
Dagoberto, G. (2004). Love in L.A. Chicago: Cengage Learning.
Flannery, O. (1992). A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories. Chicago: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.