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The Man of the House
Transcript of The Man of the House
Frank O'Connor was born as Michael O'Donovan in Cork, Ireland in 1903. He later went by Frank O'Connor when he began writing. O'Connor was an Irish writer who wrote several texts that include 11 collections of short stories, 2 novels, a book of poetry, a biography and autobiography, plays and more. He was known for the interpretations of the Irish literature into the English-speaking world. Born into poverty he had very little education before he began working as a librarian which sparked his writing.
This story is considered a shorty story. In this short story, a boy, named Gus, takes the responsibility of taking care of his sick mother. He decides to stay home from school so he can do what it takes to make her feel better. So he has his mother get a list together so he can run errands for her. While he is gone a friend comes over to check on her and suggests that she may need to get a doctor. Later on she gets worse so he calls the doctor to come and check on her and he prescribes a prescription that one would have to pick up in town, which was far away, and Gus agrees to go. When he gets to the hospital, a girl is waiting as well and when they both get their medicine they start walking back together. When the little girl guilt Gus into trying the medicine he does and ends up drinking the whole thing before he gets any to his mother. He gets back home, confesses, then starts to not feel well and he is put to bed by his mother. He later wakes and realizes that his wish came true that his mother was better and he didn't have to be the man of the house anymore.
Why is he canonized?
The Man of the House
Image by Tom Mooring
Frank O'Connor is canonized because of his outstanding pieces of work and his literary accomplishments. His literary works have received merits and are highly acclaimed by scholars and other literary experts. He is well known not only in Ireland but throughout the whole world, which is evident by the fact that we find his works in our textbooks today. In fact it is said that you will not find in the twentieth century a text that does not include a piece of his work. He has also written reviews for highly acclaimed journals such as
The New York Times Book Review
The Irish Times,
. He was a librarian, a teacher in Ireland and in the U.S. , and also became a member of the board of directors of the Abbey Theater.
The Man of the House
By Frank O'Connor
We still read his stories today because they have to do with real life scenarios, and people can relate to them easily. They show meaning to people and help them see it from a different point of view.
"Among the very best translations of Irish Poetry"
“In his 63 years, Frank O’Connor produced an impressive amount of work… but it’s his short stories that guarantee his immortality. They are encapsulated universities. While most modern stories focus on a single moment, Frank O’Connor’s generally sum up the patterns of whole lives… Each [story] is, in its own way shattering.”
-Anne Tyler, Chicago Sunday Times
Why do we still read his works?
This story is showing how a boy wanted to take the responsibility of his mom when she got sick. It also shows the use of temptation and guilt and shows how they are not as easy as they seem and one has to work to overcome them. O'Connor wrote this as a man, himself, reflecting on this scenario that happened in his past, he wanted to use this to show that people make mistakes and they are human.
"The Man of the House – Frank O’Connor." The Typists Pen. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Nov. 2013. <http://typistspen.com/the-man-of-the-house-frank-oconnor/>.
"Frank O’Connor: Man of Letters." Frank O'Connor Research Website. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Nov. 2013. <http://frankoconnor.ucc.ie/introduction_to_foc.php?teanga=>.
“His place in the company of W. B. Yeats, J. M. Synge, and James Joyce seem secure.” -Wall Street Journal
O’Connor, Frank. “50 Great Short Stories.” 52. Milton Crane. New York: Bantam Books, Inc, 1983. 245-255. Print.
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