How Much Of The 's Treatment Is Too Trusted More By The Jury Than Tom

1590 Words Oct 21st, 2015 7 Pages
1)How much of Mayella’s treatment is due not just to her being a white person accusing an African American of a crime, but a white woman accusing an African-American man of rape? Though Mayella’s testimony is naturally trusted more by the jury than Tom’s because of their racial differences, the real reason why Mayella’s powerful monologue during the trial is given importance and seen as truthful is because of her position as a white woman. One of the central tenets of Southern hospitality and tradition that emerges during the novel is the protective and gentlemanlike behavior of men towards women. When Mayella states “That N-word yonder took advantage of me an’ if you fine fancy gentlemen don’t wanta do nothin’ about it then you’re all yellow stinking cowards” on page 188, she is attacking the jury(which is made up exclusively of white farmer men) and its members’ bravery to show kindness and nobility towards a poor, wronged female. The charge of rape furthers this argument because it is a grave offense that is regarded as an unspeakable act, a social taboo of sorts and a capital offense punishable by death in Alabama. Moreover, the fact that the defendant is African-American combined with the nature of the crime instantly adheres to the bias in the jurors’ minds and adds to the already evil impression of Tom, a man who in the jury’s eyes has violated every single rule in the book by even speaking to Mayella, much less raping her.
2)Though Mayella hurts Tom by accusing him…

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