ChidchanokKasetpibal 5240131722 ANAL LIT Reading Response # 3 The Significance of O’Connor’s Short Story’s Title “Good Country People” In my opinion, Flannery O’Connor has decided to use “Good Country People” as the title of this short story because she wants it to be sarcasm. The title of the story is completely reverse to all the characters appearing in the story. All of them are not actually good country people at all. They are just some people who seem to be good.
We can see how “Good Country People” is sarcasm by looking at each characters but in here I would like to give some examples of the characters that express the idea that “Good Country People” is real sarcasm. Joy or Hulga, the protagonist of the story, is the obvious example of the title’s sarcasm. She is a disabled girl who has lost one of her legs since she was ten. It’s normal for disabled people to have some mental disorder or strage personalities due to stress or pressure in life but in this story the point isn’t about effects from her deformity but it’s about her sense of superiority.
The thing is that she has a chance to go to college so she thinks that she is superior to everyone around. We could say that her education helps confirm her superiority. She is also introvert and anti-social even with her own mother. Another thing that makes her become different is that she thinks that ugliness is what makes her special. She has changed her name from Joy to Hulga which has an ugly meaning to emphasize her ugliness and also dresses up like a young kid.
Her personalities only make her life become worse. The second example is the bible salesman Manly Pointer. At first, he claims that he is a real religious man and tries to convince Mrs. Hopewell to believe that he’s friendly and sincere. But actually he comes to this home because he wants to seduce Joy and take her wooden leg away. He has already planned everything. It’s like he tries to prove that the lower-class person like him can overcome someone in the upper-class like Joy or Mrs. Hopewell. Even Mrs.
Hopewell who seems to be the nicest person in the story is also not a real good country person. The good side of her is that she is a very positive thinker. For example, her favorite quote is “ Nothing is perfect. ”. However, she still looks down on people like Mrs. Freeman and thinks that at last she is superior than others. She also thinks that her daughter Joy’s philosophy knowledge is kind of useless. From these charaters above, we can see that the title “Good Country People” is real sarcasm.