Courage Against Social Prejudice

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During the 1930’s, there was a significant amount of racial inequality in the South. Black people were considered unequal compared to white people resulting in mistreatment and abuse. Harper Lee, the author of To Kill a Mockingbird, displays her opinion about social inequality through a variety of different characters who exhibit courage through everyday life. In Lee’s novel, one character, Mrs. Maudie who is a friend to Jem and Scout explains the meaning of a mockingbird as the following: “they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us” (Lee, 1960, p.90). These characters, such as the Finch family, although quite different in their lifestyles, go against the social norm of treating African Americans as second class citizens.…show more content…
Tom Robinson is an honest man black man who works hard to support his family (Lee, 1960, p.197). Tom was accused of raping and beating Mayela Ewell, a white woman (Lee, 1960, p.123). Mayela Ewell was the daughter of Bob Ewell; they were quite poor because her father failed to do the duties that a good father should do. They were considered to be white trash of their society. Although there was little proof of this accusation, most people believed in the raping because of their stereotypical thought of black people in that era. This shows the value of black people because although being the white trash of the society, most people stood up for her. Arthur Radley, commonly known as Boo, exemplifies a mockingbird in how he finally emerges from his reclusiveness and saves Jem and Scout. Boo is an odd recluse who stabbed his father as a young boy due to abuse (Lee,1960, p.11). Scout and Jem, who are the children of Atticus, out of curiosity attempt to befriend him. Because of their childish curiosity, they go on small adventures such as attempting to communicate through a letter tied on the end of a fishing pole (Lee, 1960, p. 48), to even peeking in the Radley’s house to see if he is real (Lee, 1960, p 53). Boo tries to communicate to the children although they go on not knowing who it really was (Lee, 1960, p. 33). The first glimpse of Boo is when Mrs. Maudie’s house catches on fire (Lee, 1960, p 70). Jem and Scout are standing at
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