Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Let The Violent Bear it Away by Flannery O'Connor (1960)

Flannery O'Connor (1925 to 1964, Savannah, Georgia, USA) is tremendously influential very highly regarded writer working a style called "Southern Gothic".  I have now read all of her short stories and both of her novels.   Virtually all of her work has deeply religious themes.   There was nothing moderate about O'Connor's commitment to her version of Catholicism.     Certainly she believes literally in damnation.   The plot in Let the Violent Bare it Away centers on a man and his nephew.  The uncle is certain the nephew is detained to bring a revelation. When the nephew rebels, he is in revolt against God.   Almost every sentence is a wonder.  As in her work, people are strange, given to violence.  There are things to ponder in O'Connor.  Why are women who have sex with men they are not married to called "whores", why do white characters nearly all call people of color "niggers"?  By 1960 this was unacceptable language, even in Georgia.  

This is a powerful work many will find disturbing.  

Of her two novels, I prefer Wise Blood".   

Her short stories are required reading in Masters in Fine Art programs focusing on creative writing.

Mel u

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