"Tom T. Shiftlet: the Untraditional Christ Figure"
As noted in class, Flannery O'Connor's Catholic faith dominates her writing style. Clearly demonstrated in "The Life You Save May Be Your Own," O'Connor reveals interesting parallels between Tom Shiftlet as an untraditional Christ figure in this notable short story.
The symbolism illustrated through Shiftlet becomes evident upon his entrance in the story. The description of Tom T. Shiftlet alludes superficially to Jesus. Before saying anything to Mrs.
showed first 75 words of 731 total
showed last 75 words of 731 total
sacrifice, like Christ; however, unlike Christ, he does not sacrifice himself.
Although some of his words and actions express sentiments that resemble Christ-like qualities, Tom Shiftlet is not anything more than a perverted Christ-figure simply because he chooses not to be more. His true desires do not lie within salvation. His materialism outweighs his spirituality; therefore, any positive intentions he might have had originally get lost in his attempt to improve his life.
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