7th Annual WML Academic Symposium

Time: 10:00 AM
Rm 225
Presenter(s): Jordan Upton
Title: “Capitalism, Class Struggle, and Flannery O’Connor’s The Violent Bear It Away
Developed under the guidance of Dr. Sherry Truffin , English

This paper examines Flannery O’Connor’s second and final novel The Violent Bear it Away through a Marxist critical lens and shows how the changing economic climate in America after World War II influenced O’Connor’s characters, narrative, and themes. Published in 1960, The Violent Bear It Away dramatizes the plight of the lower-class and underprivileged Southerner in a time of economic decline and abandonment, ultimately suggesting that the modern capitalist system both oppresses the Southerner economically and threatens him spiritually.