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Sometimes a Hat is Just a Hat

This made me laugh. Good ol' Flannery.

"Week before last I went to Wesleyan and read “A Good Man Is Hard to Find.” After it I went to one of the classes where I was asked questions. There were a couple of young teachers there and one of them, an earnest type, started asking the questions. “Miss O’Connor,” he said, “why was the Misfit’s hat black?” I said most countrymen in Georgia wore black hats. He looked pretty disappointed. Then he said, “Miss O’Connor, the Misfit represents Christ, does he not?” “He does not,” I said. He looked crushed. “Well, Miss O’Connor,” he said, “what is the significance of the Misfit’s hat?” I said it was to cover his head; and after that he left me alone. Anyway, that’s what’s happening to the teaching of literature."

-Letter from Flannery O'Connor, dated 25 May, 1959.


Raquel said…
I love Flannery O'Connor and A Good Man is Hard to Find is one of my favorite stories. :-) I had not actually read this letter, but thanks for posting it. I got a good laugh!! It's amazing how hard "scholars" will read into a piece of literature at times...myself included. :-)