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Examples Of Jim Crow Laws In To Kill A Mockingbird

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The first influence on Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird is the Jim Crow laws. The Jim Crow laws were a set of rules that perpetuated racism and segregation. These rules were sickening and appalling. The Jim Crow laws were made to keep Blacks from interacting with Whites. For example, if a white woman were to fall a black man could not offer her, his hand to help her up because it was considered rape (Pilgrim 2). Many scientists and religious leaders justified these laws. One reason was that scientist thought that black peoples brains were inferior to those of white people. Also, many religious leaders believed that Whites were the chosen people and Blacks were just there to serve them (Pilgrim 2). If you were not following these laws, there were sever consequences. People believed these punishments were necessary to “keep Blacks in their place”. One example is mass lynching. This punishment is when a mob of people would take a black person, accused of breaking a rule, and beat them, torture them, and kill them. The police didn’t just not stop these rampages, often they would participate. The Jim Crow laws can be seen in To Kill a Mockingbird in many ways. One of the laws was that a black person could not say that a white person was lying (Pilgrim). This is shown in the book when Tom is accused of calling Mayella a liar, by Mr. Gilmer (Lee 224).
Another influence that helped Harper Lee write To Kill a Mockingbird was mob mentality. The concept of mob mentality is a
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