Frank O?Connor?s ?First Confession? is a short story contrasting hypocrisy and honesty in regard to religious faith, which upon reading might, with any luck, inspire a person to examine their own sincerity of faith or lack of it. O?Connor masterfully weaves together the use of three main elements: tone, characterization, and point of view, in illustrating this theme to his readers. A brief examination of these tools will show how they each contribute to the contrast itself as well as how a reading of ?First Confession? might inspire a person to meditate on their own faith to discover if in fact it is of a hypocritical nature or purely honest.
One basic element O?Connor uses in his contrast of hypocrisy and honesty is tone. Although this is indeed a serious subject, O?Connor makes his point by incorporating the humor of childhood inexperience into the story, thus creating a lighthearted tone. One example of this is illustrated when the reader is introduced to Jackie?s lack of familiarity with the confessional and his subsequent fumbled attempts to carry through with what he knows vaguely he should
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