A desciption of Flannery O'Conner as both an author and a person. This essay is based on a casebook of her life and writing.

Essay by Toof_75_75 February 2003

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Flannery O'Connor became an established Southern writer noted for her themes of the crumbling South and its values. Her short stories reflected upon the changing and declining times in the southern U.S. focusing on themes of religion, racism, and declining morals among others. Her works are greatly open for interpretation and analysis and offer a unique style and humor distinctive to her writing. She is a very captivating author to study.

One of the first things that jumped out about Flannery O'Connor is in the prelude to the casebook. It says, "While acknowledging that there is usually more than one way to read a story, she (O'Connor) also stated that there was only one way she could have possibly written it." What's really interesting about that quote is that she is saying that many different things can be extrapolated from hers or any author's work for that matter, but when a writer creates something, he or she really has only certain things in mind.

It's this very general principle that makes literature so fascinating and open for people like us to analyze. Most good literature is considered good because of the meanings, themes, and ideas it brings about. Many of these ideas were intentional by the author but a good bit are also simply discovered and pulled out of the text rationally. Literature isn't an exact science with figures to compare, data to observe, or calculations to complete. It's open ended without definite lines or boundaries and that's what gives literature such a deep appreciation and importance.

Moving on, in her essay titled Writing Short Stories, O'Connor makes a commentary about Franz Kafka's "The Metamorphosis". Since we read that short story last year, far more meaning is given to her statement prior to that paragraph saying that "the greater the...