"Somebody Is Always After You": Disrupting Modernity
OíConnorís depiction of modernity as a morass of self-satisfied and ignorant cruelty presents a discredits to the triumphalist attitudes of her time. At the same time, she offers an alternative to this dominant mode through her consistent narrative of the confrontation between the modern mind and the reality of Christian divinity. Christianity becomes an authentic and emerging reality behind the façade of secular perception.

In presenting this confrontation, OíConnor employs the devices of the aesthetic tradition of the grotesque. Her genuine belief in Christian metaphysics as a universal reality behind the perceived world challenges both the historical use of the grotesque and also the post-modern readings of the various forms of disability studies. These traditions respectively interpret the disruption engendered by the grotesque/monster/disabled as a revelator of the absence of authentic meaning behind the socially constructed reality. OíConnorís religious understanding posits a divine Presence, where others see only a void. Ultimately, this separates her philosophically not only from the dominant culture of her own time but also from the various political and intellectual movements that have arisen in reaction to it.