The stories “Death in the Woods” and “A Good Man is Hard to Find” explore the themes of good and evil. The former talks about the problems caused by harsh winter that Mrs. Grimes endures throughout her life. However, she acknowledges the importance of a marriage institution by establishing a strong family relationship before dying in the woods. The latter tells about a Georgia Family that dies upon meeting an evil being while on the way to a home that the grandmother wanted to visit. Both stories contain incidences and actions that depict the good and evil in the society. The stories suggest that the acts of good and evil are determined by human actions that depend on personal interests in a given situation or scenario.
Each community has a set of virtues that guide its members on what is right in the society. Community virtues describe the good practices recommended in a social environment and may include hard work, moral ethics, kindness, and respect for the members of the community. “Death in the Woods” presents incidences that imply that community virtues have a strong influence on human actions. For instance, Mrs. Grimes considers marriage as an important part in life. Despite her suffering domestic violence in the hands of her husband, she clings onto the marriage unit her death in the woods. Similarly, the story “A Good Man is Hard to Find” captures community virtues such as family time, specifically vacations in the summer. The family in the story was bonding when it crashed into a ditch while travelling to Florida. The accident is reported to be a result of driver’s confusion which lands the vehicle into a ditch. The two stories capture the situation in real life as society values both marriage and family time.
Community virtues, in rare cases, are wrongly interpreted and may result in societal vices that are criminal in nature. Vices refer to actions that cause harm or discomfort people or the environment. They may include murder, theft, and assault. Sometimes, death occurs through accidentally hence no party is held responsible. “A Good Man is Hard to Find” illustrates such an incident: a car accident that kills all the passengers. Death is presented as an unfortunate act which is caused by a third party which blocks the drivers’ view on the road. However, sometimes deliberate human action lead to death thus necessitating legal action. For instance, in “Death in the Woods,” a woman dies undeservingly. She succumbs to harsh winter conditions. Mr. Grimes is partially blamed for her death since he fails in his moral duty to provide for his family. His irrational behavior oppresses Mrs. Grimes who is left to suffer until her death in the woods. The situation worsens when their son picks up the irresponsible behavior practices by Mr. Grimes.
The theme of good and evil is imminent themes illustrated using different plot scenarios in both books. Despite human suffering that we might endure in life, “A Good Man is Hard to Find” acknowledges that family is always a good thing for the happiness of the involved individuals. Family time fulfills our social needs by ensuring we gain satisfaction on bonding with relative of an extended family. The story “Death in the Woods” describes the loss of life that is caused by the failure of another to perform his role.