Shoes and Class Distinctions

Without appearing to, Mrs. Turpin always noticed people’s feet. The well-dressed lady had on red and gray suede shoes to match her dress. Mrs. Turpin had on her good black patent leather pumps. The ugly girl had on Girl Scout shoes and heavy socks. The old woman had on tennis shoes and the white-trashy mother had on what appeared to be bedroom slippers, black straw with gold braid threaded through them–exactly what you would have expected her to have on.

— from “Revelation” by Flannery O’Connor

Do you notice people’s shoes and make class distinctions based on them? My favorite shoes at this time of year are an old pair of blue canvas shoes with white laces and big cracks at the in-step. I wonder what Mrs. Turpin would make of that.

If you are a Flannery O’Connor fan, you may be interested in a new book published by a company called Wiseblood Books. The book, The Unfinished Life of N. by Micah Cawber, is written in the tradition of Flannery O’Connor.  You can buy it here or on Amazon. Incidentally, Wiseblood Books is the same company publishing my book, A Flower in the Heart of the Painting, to be released on November 1, 2013. I’ll provide more details about that later this month.


3 thoughts on “Shoes and Class Distinctions”

  1. I can’t say that I notice people’s shoes much- here in Colorado people dress very casually, but the biggest show of money or class is probably high-end outdoor gear. Chacos and expensive trail running shoes are the footwear of choice. I’ve worn the same pair of $10 crocs (I got them on sale, and they’re actually fairly nice looking for crocs) for two summers now. Sometimes I wear my ancient Birkenstocks, or a pair of sneakers. No one I know cares much about what shoes others are wearing 🙂

    My mom used to say that you could tell wealthy people by their skin and their hair…

    I’ve never read Flannery O’Connor, perhaps I should.

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