Essay On Racism In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Racism and Prejudice A person’s childhood can really affect the way they see the world. Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, is highly influenced by the life she lived as a little girl. She grew up in the small town of Monroeville, Alabama. She was born there in 1926 and recently passed away in February of 2016 (Lee). Harper Lee’s real name was Nelle (Nail), but everyone calls her Harper because she opted for Nelle to be left off of her first novel. Her parents named her after her grandmother, Ellen, but spelled backwards (Shields I Am Scout 6). Despite growing up with two older sisters and only one brother, Nelle grew up as a tomboy. Her childhood best friend was her next door neighbor, Truman Capote. They both shared a common…show more content…
They also fought against the lynching and racial injustice that african-americans received (Pitre). Lee demonstrates this racist society that she grew up in throughout the different aspects within her novel. Racism and prejudice negatively affects african-americans and those who associate with them in To Kill a Mockingbird as it permits people to make a judgement based on color and not values. When Tom Robinson makes his first appearance, it isn’t until late in the novel. When he does appear in To Kill a Mockingbird, Tom is accused of a crime that he clearly didn’t commit. Mayella Ewell, daughter of Bob Ewell, claims that Tom raped her. Tom is what is referred to in this novel as a “mockingbird.” He is a mockingbird because he does no harm to anyone and all he does is help the Ewell family whenever they need a hand. Harper also includes the fact that Tom’s character only has one and a half arms, so that provides even more evidence that he wasn’t even capable of doing such a thing. In the racist town of Maycomb, no matter how good of a lawyer Atticus Finch was, it wasn’t gonna change the fact that Tom was still going to be ruled guilty. The jury on this case was, of course, all white males and they just wanted to see one less african-american in their town. He had no chance of making it out of the courtroom innocent all because he was black. His character is the most important when mentioning the racism in To Kill a Mockingbird.
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