Wise Blood by Flannery O’Connor
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Wise Blood by Flannery O’Connor
In this novel, the persons quoted take religious as a way to meet their ends, and they do not preach what is supposed to be preached. In itself, the belief in Christ to some persons like Asa Hawk is to make a strong belief that his blindness is out of the belief in Christ, and it is in no way a true thing about him. However, the statement that the belief in Christ is to some a matter of life and death strikes opposite to the readers, and it is actually an obstacle to those who may think that it is of not great significance. As Hazel himself notes in the novel, the integrity of the person in this novel lies with vigor so that they can make their ends meet, for example the blindness of Asa Hawk. However, to a number of people, they may tend to think otherwise; especially to the readers who may end subscribing to the notion that Christianity is just used to make money to get over some stumbling barriers.
Integrity can be said that it lies in somebody being unable to do something, and this novel particularly becomes interesting when we find that even the main character; Haze Motes dies in a police car having pretended also to be blind. His supposed integrity, which had made him lie that he is a blind man, leads him to his own death. The choosing of the term obstacle by the author is seen to be meaning that what the characters in the story are doing could be wrong and this has led to the readers themselves developing a tendency of liking the whole issue of believing in Christ. The difference is further seen in the argument that the Jews were the kind of people who were using the signs as their demands while the Greeks followed their wisdom. In this regard therefore, the belief in Christ about his being crucified could be the obstacle to the Jews and the foolishness of the gentiles.
In this novel and in connection to the actions that revealed themselves in the characters, we can note that Hazel Motes is portrayed by the author as somebody who was eventually redeemed by the impossibility of rejecting Jesus Christ. The death of Haze perhaps is the culmination of his sins first, by trying to preach against the popular will and belief of persons, and then the murders, blasphemy and fornication. Even though, the writing by this author do not show that the characters turn a new life as it would be expected before their death, and this largely puts some pessimism in the readers and a lot of criticism for the direction the book takes. If the idea of putting the argument that Jesus Christ was really crucified, and it was bad for the character to start his own church of making people believe that there was no Jesus, then, it does not work because the characters themselves do not show that. What we have in the end is confusion on what the novel was supposed to show regarding the topic.
The car that Hazel bought on which is described by the author as “rat-colored car” has a lot of meaning. First, it can represent the character of Hazel, where, we even see that when Hazel killed the man by the use of this car, this car is then destroyed by the police officer’s car. What this then depicts is that what Hazel was doing, that is, the sins that he was committing were also to be destroyed. The scene where Hazel rams the other’s car with his own is a total depiction of his evil ways and weird kind of character. In this particular scene, we get to know that Hazel can kill, and thus he is a murderer. In connection to this scene, and the fact that he was still a person with his own church, we can conclude that this car was the representation of the blasphemy that he was carrying with him; where the car was the symbol of this blasphemy that was taking this man to commit his evils.
The other scene is when the police officer destroys his car, and even though he himself describes this police officer as malicious, we see it was destroying the bad trait he was carrying. Actually, when the police officer rolls over the car, it is a painful reminder to Hazel of how he rammed the man in the car killing him instantly. It shows correlation that the way you destroyed the other, it is the same way that you will also be destroyed when your days come to end. The man who was killed by Hazel was made to look like him, and therefore, when he killed the man, it is as though he killed himself, and his time was to come when he was stopped by the police officer and then his car being destroyed. The popular notion that what you plant is what you will get tends to be given the truth in this novel. This is especially when we have the scenes, which follow one after the other; where, in this case, the man is killed by Hazel using his car, and in a way to make him repent, he is spared but the car crashed.
The meanings go through the whole of the novel, and the car is just one of the many meanings that are given in the novel by the use of symbols. There is the giving of another chance to this person, but because the character goes on with his ways, he is not given many other chances, but is made to pay by his own death. For example, after the car was crashed, it was a way of reminding him of the evil ways perhaps turns the other way. What then happens is that Hazel blind himself by use of lime. This just furthers his rejection of Jesus Christ as the only redeemer and wants to go ahead to prove there is nothing like Jesus. The culmination of this novel is therefore that integrity can destroy us, but if we are to use our integrity in the right ways, then, there is nothing, which can make us destroyed in the end.