The grandmother and Emily Grierson substantially share common character or attitude: these women highly value the historical and/or personal past. The grandmother cherishes the good old days -- e.g., children were more respectful to old folks (O’Connor 34) -- and Emily esteems the deeds of the olden time -- e.g., tax remittance served by Sartoris (Faulkner 700). In the end, though, the true characters of these two protagonists are subtly exposed with the shocking revelation. In Contrast Despite the similarity of the type of irony, the two stories considerably delivered their ironies in a different manner. First, the direction of the story’s attack is sharply different. For one thing, the irony in O’Connor’s story subtly criticizes its main protagonist, the grandmother; in Faulkner’s story, on the other hand, the fine criticism is deliberately thrown against the narrator itself, the townspeople. Unlike O’Connor’s narrative, Faulkner’s generally attacks the people of Mississippi for their gross negligence of Emily’s inner thought and feeling. The townspeople notably create an imaginary picture of Emily Grierson that is very contradictory to the woman - the protagonist’s true mind and heart; the society of which Emily lives with collectively stop the protagonist from exploring her own potential. And second, the time reference is starkly different in contrasting the two stories. In “A Good Man Is Hard to Find,” the time sequence of the narrative is evidently continuous and successive. A Good Man Is Hard to Find: O'Connor and Catholicism.
Faulkner, William. “A Rose for Emily.” This America. Eds. John D. Kern and Irwin Griggs. New
York: Macmillan, 1942. 699-708. Print.
O’Connor, Flannery. “A Good Man Is Hard to Find.” A Good Man Is Hard to Find. Ed.
Frederick Asals. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers, 1993. 31-51. Print.
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