The Complete Stories of Flannery O'Connor Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Who is Rabie?

Rabie is the African-American man that worked at the boardinghouse where Old Dudley used to live. Rabie used to finish his work early and help Old Dudley with projects and accompany him fishing.

2. What does Old Dudley think about New York?

Old Dudley thinks New York is too crowded, too busy and too loud. He’s constantly confronted with his own prejudice and cannot believe that his daughter’s neighbor is a black man.

3. Why does Rayber change barbers?

Rayber changes barbers because he is badgered by his old barber concerning the upcoming election. A presidential election is coming up and Rayber is a liberal and against segregation. Though he disagrees with everything his barber says, he still cannot muster up the courage to clearly explain his thoughts.

4. Why does Rayber’s old barber call him a “mother hubbard”?

The term “mother hubbard” was used to describe people who were against segregation. Rayber initially takes offense to this, but realizes that it is true and what he believes.

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