In Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, prejudice and racism are embedded in the regional psyche of Maycomb, a miniscule town in Alabama. The narrator interpolates injustice and racism in Alabama during the 1930s, largely through the eyes of Scout, who was a child during this time, however, the adult Scout occasionally interjects with some adult observations. Furthermore, the citizens of Maycomb are stereotyped pervasively throughout the book. In Harper Lee’s To Kill Mockingbird, examples of racism, sexism, and social class are used to demonstrate how prejudice can corrupt a community.
The novel “To Kill a Mocking Bird” is based in the fictional small Southern town of Maycomb, Alabama in the 1930s. When slavery and the Civil War were still present in the people’s way of living and the civil rights movement of the 1950s and '60s are far from close. The novel focuses on the Finches: Scout, her brother Jem, and their father Atticus, and the trial of Tom Robinson and how it affected them and the town. Witnessing the injustice of Tom Robinson’s trial changed Scout Finch in many ways. Scout learns that there is more than one type of courage, she learns about race and its complexity, and she also changes how she views the people around her by putting herself
A chapter on Harper Lee's now-classic To Kill a Mockingbird deiûy analyzes the novel's ideological contradictions, showing that Lee's insistent locaLIsm at once acknowledged the continuing impact of the Scottsboro Narrative and undermined its significance as a register to the injustices of the American legal system. In a trenchant epILogue. (Foley 768)
Imagine a place where the verdict of a rape trial stems from racial prejudice rather than the proper evaluation of proven evidence. This is Maycomb, Alabama, the strange, Southern town where Scout and Jem Finch grow up during the 1930s in the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee. In short, the novel travels a thin line between a light-hearted narrative of the siblings’ childhood with their single father, a defense attorney named Atticus Finch, and the injustices that arise within their close-knit community. The complexities include extreme racism, a peculiar social hierarchy, and general misunderstandings of certain people within the small town. These are all seen as “Maycomb ways”, almost as if they are considered facts. Through her writing, Lee conveys an important message that an essential part of a child’s education often takes place in a home or community rather than a classroom by utilizing the characters, Atticus Finch and Tom Robinson, a black man accused of rape whom Atticus is defending.
The church and God are synonymous with righteousness. Therefore, Atticus uses the widespread influence of religion to equate the moral teachings of God with how he dutifully carries out the defense of an innocent black man. These instances in which Atticus’s true character is revealed, both directly and indirectly, teach Scout and Jem that keeping a good conscience is the perfect antidote to “Maycomb’s usual disease”, which is just a small strain of the larger societal problem of prejudice.
Outside the town limits, across the old sawmill tracks, lies a building with old paint crumbling off the sides and a cemetery lying right beside it. The brick-hard clay covered the land underneath both the churchyard and the cemetery. There lied crumbling tombstones and some new ones as well. Each one having an assortment of shattered coca-cola bottles, colorful glass, and dozens upon dozens of burnt out candles surrounding them. This was a happy place. The sweet aroma of Negro blossomed in the air, curating a scent of peppermint, snuff, and sweet lilac. It felt welcoming and homely. During the mid-1920s, in the darling town of Maycomb, Alabama, not all people had such a humbleness to them. Many people were not treated with the same respect and kindness as others, as shown in the novel, To Kill A Mockingbird. Throughout the novel, To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, shows concerns about social class and how it affects everyone around them. Being different during the mid-1930s was excruciating, even though they were factors that can’t be controlled, and Lee wanted to make a point about that.
Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill A Mockingbird, is a realistic story that deeply discusses issues involved with the 1930’s that still resonate today. The struggles of life are evident within the believable characters of Maycomb County which is a microcosm, reflective of universal issues. Along with the authentic characters, setting and style also helps to convey Lee’s controversial notions of racial and gender prejudice, and persecution of the innocent, discussing many other ideas within.
Being at the top of the social hierarchy has been a must for every American of past generations, but can lead to fatal damages for some trying to obtain that goal and a cause to ruin people’s lives. In a remarkably triumphant story on compassion, Harper Lee explored the horrors of racial prejudice in the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Set in the 1930’s, the poor town of Maycomb, Alabama has been hit by the depression hard, which created a vast, complex social pyramid, with distinct families and lifestyles. At the Finch household, composed of a little nine year old girl, Scout, a twelve year old boy Jem, and their father Atticus, proceed through a whirlwind of events throughout the next few years. Atticus, a lawyer who is a hardworking, honest man at the top of the social hierarchy of Maycomb, has to defend a colored man by the name of Tom Robinson. This happened to be very unusual for the time period, as the family has to transcend through the struggles in a racial prejudice town and learn the raw nature of the worst in humans, thus trying to overcome these events through compassion. The author utilizes metaphor, characterization, and mood to describe the situation of Maycomb, it soon then becomes very clear that the dangers of ruining innocence can lead to a vast road of horrors and evils.
To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, is a complex literary work exploring several aspects of the human condition. Lee’s story is one based in the 1930’s, shortly before the Civil Rights Movement. Her novel ventures into the societal issues, such as racism and gender stereotyping, in their fictional town, Maycomb. One recurring theme throughout the narrative is the social adjustment of the citizens of Maycomb and the human race as a whole. Lee showcases the progress in social justice matters by using symbolism and motifs.
The coming-of-age novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee is set in the fictional town of Maycomb County, Alabama around the 1930s. Vile racial discrimination in Maycomb is what lead to the trial of Tom Robinson, a black man accused of raping Mayella Ewell, a white woman. Atticus, the father of Scout, was assigned to defend Robinson in court. Atticus organized his argument to be successful by using rhetorical devices- ethos, pathos, and logos.
Harper Lee’s novel, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” is set in a small, southern town, Maycomb, Alabama during the Great Depression of the 1930s. The story is told through the eyes of a girl named Scout about her father, Atticus, an attorney who strives to prove the innocence of a black man named Tom Robinson, who was accused of rape and Boo Radley, an enigmatic neighbor who saves Scout and her brother Jem from being killed. Atticus does his job in proving there was no way that Tom Robinson was guilty during his trial, but despite Tom Robinson’s obvious innocence, he is convicted of rape as it is his word against a white woman’s. Believing a “black man’s word” seemed absurd as segregation was a very integrated part of life in the south. The social hierarchy must be maintained at all costs and if something in the system should testify the innocence of a black man against a white woman’s word and win then what might happen next? Along with the prejudice amongst blacks and whites, the story also showed how people could be misunderstood for who they truly are such as Boo Radley. Without ever seeing Boo, Jem and the townsfolk made wild assumptions on what Boo does or looks like. Even so, while “To Kill a Mockingbird” shows the ugliness that can come from judging others, its ultimate message is that great good can result when one defers judgement until considering things from another person’s view. Walter Cunningham, Mrs. Dubose, and Boo Radley are all examples of how looking at things
Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird is set in the sleepy, southern Maycomb, Alabama. A small town in the grips of 1930’s depression, To Kill a Mockingbird spans a period of three years following young Scout Finch and her family through their experiences with racism and prejudice. Jim Crow laws were a series of ordinances the prevented equal treatment of African-Americans. Beginning with the end of Reconstruction in 1877 and remaining in effect until the Civil rights movement of the 1950s, Jim Crow laws governed where colored people could live, work, eat, enter and exit a building, and use public services. “Jim Crow laws grew from theories of white supremacy and were a reaction to Reconstruction,” explained Andrew Costly of the Constitutional Rights Foundation, “In the depression-racked 1890s, racism appealed to whites who feared losing their jobs to blacks.” Ensuring that freed slaves remained weak and inferior, Jim Crow laws revoked black freedom’s and crippled their rights. And while not explicitly stated, evidence of Jim Crow Laws appears methodically throughout To Kill a Mockingbird. Strongly influenced by elements of racism, the story paints a vivid picture of life in the era of Jim Crow, for both colored and white.
“But now he’s turned out a nigger-lover we’ll never be able to walk the streets of Maycomb again. He’s ruining’ the family, that’s what he’s doing’.” (Lee 110). The power of hatred is one so strong, that it imprisons the Finches and African Americans of Maycomb County. In Alabama of 1920 to 1930, segregation is an established action of the Southerners, it’s a lifestyle. The slurs passed from the mouths of white Southerners and ending with the shooting of a black man, the ways of Maycomb County are ones seen as either shocking or common in today’s eyes. To Kill A Mockingbird is an eminent novel by Harper Lee that illustrates the aspects of discrimination and prejudice, tolerance and courage during a time in America where racial inequality
The prejudice in Tom’s trial is also visible by the segregated seating arrangements of the whites and the blacks in the courthouse. The portrayed segregation not only takes place at the Maycomb court of law but had appeared through out the novel in all aspects of Maycomb life. This segregation is illustrated by Harper Lee through imagery and is strengthened through the realist aspect of the novel. The author shows prejudice through this segregation by revealing the two contrasting places where the ‘white and blacks’ lived and even where they went to separate churches. The author paints a vivid picture of the blacks living in a ghetto
Lee’s didactic way of writing in “To Kill A Mockingbird” highlights the biblical segregation between the black and white community, hence capturing the facade of the American dream. Through the effective use of dialogue, Lee creates a superficial boundary between religious beliefs. “I wants to know why you bringin’ white chillun to nigger church” Lula, a regular attendee of the congregation, condemns Calpurnias’ idea of bringing the white children to the “coloured” church. By employing dialogue of a random community member in contrast to a main character, the composer evokes the idea that the “coloured” church is as a sanctuary for all the black people in Alabama. The church acts as a liberator since it allows the black