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A Good Man is Hard to Find

A Good Man is Hard to Find


by Flannery O'Connor

The Grandmother Timeline and Summary

  • The grandmother is at home, and in disagreement with her family about the destination of their trip.
  • She tries, and fails, to convince them to go to East Tennessee.
  • The next morning, she seems eager to go. She's in the car first, having secretly brought her cat, Pitty Sing, with her.
  • The grandmother tells the kids stories and plays with the baby as the family drives.
  • When they all stop for lunch at The Tower, the grandmother communes with Red Sammy over how hard good men are to find these days.
  • Back in the car, the grandmother decides that she wants to visit an old plantation she remembers. She gets the kids excited about it, and they throw a tantrum to force Bailey to take them there.
  • The grandmother remembers the old plantation is actually in another state.
  • She's so embarrassed by this that she upsets the basket where Pitty Sing is contained. The cat springs out and causes Bailey to have a car accident.
  • Once three men drive up to the family and get out of the car, the grandmother recognizes one of them as The Misfit. This prompts Bailey to say something very nasty to her. She may have just sentenced them all to death.
  • The grandmother starts trying to convince The Misfit that he's a "good man." Meanwhile, Bailey and John Wesley are taken into the woods.
  • Changing tactics, the grandmother asks The Misfit whether he prays, and tries to engage him in conversation about Jesus. Meanwhile, the mother and June Star are taken into the woods.
  • The grandmother makes one last desperate plea to The Misfit to let her go.
  • After hearing a final round of shots from the woods, the grandmother crumples onto the ground and becomes dizzy. She doubts Jesus.
  • The grandmother's head clears, and she reaches out to touch The Misfit, calling him one of her children.
  • The grandmother is shot, and dies smiling.