Mockingbird Innocence Theme

Decent Essays

Theme: Innocence
One of the themes presented in To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is innocence. Innocence is one of the key elements which shape and connect the whole piece together. The title itself uncovers the importance of the innocence factor in the book. Mockingbirds are a symbol of purity and how Miss Maudie explains, “it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird” (Lee 119) due to the fact that they don’t do anything but “sing their hearts out for us” (Lee 119). Mockingbirds represent the innocence of some people in Maycomb. Although the mockingbird symbolism is a core tool used to share the theme of candidness, it is possible to catch the said motif in other occasions. Every time Scout and Jem talk about the Radley Place, or the Radley family …show more content…

This specific conflict between Scout and Calpurnia, even if not particularly relevant, exposes Scout’s personality and also the situation that has formed in Maycomb. When Walter Cunningham starts eating in an unusual way and Scout is ready to point it out, Calpurnia intervenes with her words of wisdom about the fact that there are “some people who don’t eat like [Scout and her family] … but [Scout] ain’t called to contradict ‘em” (Lee 32). Scout’s reply is about the fact that he is a Cunningham and that “he ain’t company” (Lee 33). This external conflict demonstrates the close mindedness which Scout is used to. Being in a little Southern-American town, in the 30’s, Scout is certainly not accustomed to see events and people from a different point of view, something which Atticus is trying to teach her and that she is going to learn by the end of the book. The “he’s just a Cunningham” (Lee 33), shows the way the town, like any town, is. A place where people gossip among each other about other people “like [ if they] was so high and mighty] (Lee 33). A place where everybody knows everybody. Calpurnia takes this comment very offensively screaming at Scout that “[Scout and her family] might be better’n the Cunninghams but it don’t count for nothin’ the way [Scout is] disgracin’ ‘em” (Lee 33). Calpurnia take this comment very personally because at the time black people were not treated respectfully by the white community, meaning that she knows the point people can arrive up to with the insults, and she knows the importance of equality between people and that people should respect other human beings. By saying that comment Scout didn’t pay respect to the Cunninghams and that just maddened Calpurnia to a point of no return. The conflict ends with Scout eating in the kitchen without facing

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