Racism, Segregation and ill-treatment of coloured is major theme explored in the text by Harper Lee. This problem in the little town of Maycomb is just a tiny reflection in the corner of the mirror, of America at the time. And even the world, with references to Nazi Russia in the novel also bringing to light segregation in other parts of the world. She comes right out to say that the world is a racist world, with this novel and she writes to show others what is happening and that it is actually not right. And she does so in a great way by highlighting one great injustice rather than the many and bringing to a realization how irrational and unfair the entire American Justice system was. But we also see a development in the white characters which a representative of the entire America in a sense (and the world) as thoughts and ideas change and people’s views about coloured people change, not abruptly but slow of course. The black characters in To Kill A Mockingbird contribute to the development of the white characters rather than appearing as individuals in their own right. Racism is learnt, and with this we can see that Racism can
In the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, one of the major themes that author Harper Lee highlights are the divisions and inequality in society. The story is set in the 1930’s in Maycomb, Alabama when class, gender, and racial discrimination were highly prevalent. In this time Jim Crow laws were in effect. Jim Crow laws mandated the segregation between black and whites. Consequences of questioning Jim Crow laws were violent and people were rejected from society and their family. The 1930’s is also the time during which the great depression was taking place. Many families were hit hard by the great depression. Maycomb was not a poorer, small, Southern, town. Also in this time, women were not given equal rights and they were expected to fulfill
In the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” one of the multiple dilemmas brought to light in the novel and the film is the social inequality. Rather it be at the suffering of a person of color to a woman or child; todays society still suffers from from the social inequality pointed out in the novel based on the 1930s, 1933 specifically and can be compared to some cases from the novel. Social inequality can be forced on anybody but more specifically pushes onto people of a colored ethnic background (color), the gender a person is born with or chooses to identify as (sexuality), or the religion they choose to practice and so on, however this essay is going to focus mainly on the three social inequalities listed above.
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.
Social inequality is an uncivilized ranking scale which was created by simple minded people who held the fear being surpassed. The argument made by Harper Lee in her work To Kill a Mockingbird is that social inequality is a hierarchy that is complex and affects everyone. More specifically, the author argues that the racial boundaries put between the black and white during the 1930’s caused great stress. This is proven in the novel multiple times. The people of Maycomb judge one another based on the background and wealth of their families. Not only do they judge each other within the community, they discriminate against anyone different than them. Social inequality does not only exist in the form of racism, there are many forms; some of the major ones appear in this book. Social inequality based purely on family background, social inequality based on the wealth of the individual and family, and racism. These are three of the major forms of social inequality that appear numerous times in the book.
Social inequality based entirely on race affects people who don’t deserve it. To Kill a Mockingbird original publication was in 1960, it is a classic novel written by Harper Lee, the book is set in 1933 to 1935. To Kill a Mockingbird takes place in a small town called Maycomb, Alabama and follows two years in the life of 7-year old Scout Finch, her brother Jem, and their father Atticus, an attorney who hopelessly strives to prove the innocence of a black man accused of rape. The book also talks about Boo Radley, a mysterious neighbour who saves Scout and her brother Jem from being killed. The definition of social and legal codes are social codes made up of rules and standards, and a legal system is a code of laws made by a state or nation. Throughout the book, social and legal codes are exploited by people to help maintain their social status. In Maycomb County, social and legal laws harm black people to protect white people, such as Atticus Finch, Bob Ewell, and Tom Robinson.
Race is the dominant cause of inequality in To Kill A Mockingbird, thus Maycomb’s views on race heavily influence every aspect of life. Although racial inequality is clearly illustrated in the in the injustice, prejudice, discrimination and antagonism surrounding the Tom Robinson trial, it is also shown more subtly throughout the novel. In chapter 25 Atticus Finch is quoted disclosing that the corrupt justice system is a direct cause of a racist society. “In our courts, when it's a white man’s word against a black man’s, the white man always wins” (Pg 295). To emphasize, on the same occasion Atticus attempts to explain to his children how widely spread racism is, “As you grow older, you’ll see white men cheat black men everyday of your life”
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.
In harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird there are many themes however, none are as major and significant as racism. Throughout the novel Lee paints a clear image of the deep racism of Maycomb Alabama. She used the mockingbird as a symbol of innocents, a symbol that represented those who suffered unjustly, from Jem and scout to Tom Robinson. Although Maycomb and many of its characters are fictional, the themes issues are very real. For in both the fictional Maycomb and the real world, evil and racism dwell and in both, many mockingbirds are
Social injustice has flooded the world and will continue to flood the world until someone stops all this evil. In Maycomb, Alabama, during the Great Depression, there is poverty and racism ruling over the South. Scout Finch has yet to realize all the evil surrounding her and her family. The evil that takes over Maycomb is the racism that lives in the hearts of its citizens. In To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, readers see a view of social injustices caused by racism through the Maycomb citizens who see the world through a veil of hypocrisy, which is shown by their actions in the way they talk down to Tom, and the truths of Maycomb’s society.
The characters in, To Kill a Mockingbird, a novel by Harper Lee, often use prejudice against people of controversial issues. Many of the townspeople of Maycomb use prejudice on the families who are on the less wealthy end of the spectrum. Issues are still displayed because of the racial prejudice used against African Americans and those of other races. Lastly, gender is a clear issue in Maycomb because of women’s and girl’s rights and lack of respect towards them because they are female. All of the types of prejudice show that Maycomb has many problems all throughout the town between other families and townspeople.
In To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee shows a lot of racial or social issues, especially against the African-Americans, such as racial inequality and poor treatment of the poor or homeless; both of these are still at least partially seen today. Harper Lee uses the unfair trial of Tom Robinson and his cruel death to show racial inequality, especially towards the African-Americans. Towards the end of the trial, Lee describes how the jury acts when they come back in as: “A jury never looks at a defendant it has convicted, and when this jury came in, not one of them looked at Tom Robinson…” (Lee 282). Then, Judge Taylor announces the verdict: “Guilty… guilty… guilty… guilty…” (Lee 282). Later on, Atticus comes home after finding out about Tom Robinson’s death: “Tom’s dead…. They got him just as he went over the fence…. Seventeen bullet holes in him” (Lee 315). Based on this evidence, it is clear that racial inequality was evident in the 1930’s because with prior knowledge from the novel, we know that Tom didn’t stand much of a chance against the jury because of his being African-American. Also, if a white man had done what Tom did, he probably would have been given a fairer trial than Tom was. Even though, the police obviously wanted him dead as he tried to escape prison, there was no reason to shoot him seventeen times. Racial inequality can still been seen in the country, and around the world, but doesn’t seem to be as bad as it had been; some statistics show it improved soon after, but some facts show it took longer. One statistic showing that racial inequality has gotten better states, “In 1980, over 50% of the Blacks aged 25 or more had completed high school, and, by 2012, 85%” (Coleman 183).One fact stating that racial inequality took a while before improving states, “Even after the slaves were freed, the African Americans continued to face legal discrimination and segregation until the victories of the civil rights movement in the 1960’s” (“Preface to ‘What…’” 1). This evidence shows that racial inequality didn’t really improve at first. After the civil rights movement, things improved for the African Americans. From the statistic, the reader knows that between 1980 and 2012, a little over 1% more of the
In the segregated American south of the 1930s, America did not value equality as it does today. This is the case in Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, which depicts such injustice in Scout Finch’s fictional town of Maycomb, Alabama. Though Scout narrates the story as an adult, the difficult events she shares are from her childhood. As Scout lives through the events of the unfair trial of an African American man falsely accused of raping a white woman, Scout comes more aware of the evils of her society. Maycomb County is just a section of the south where many central issues like racism, classism, and sexism are plagued all throughout the south in the early 20th century.
The way social inequality was explored in the novel includes through race, social class, and gender. During the time the novel was published, social inequality was happening constantly, just like in the book. However, Harper Lee didn't care about the circumstances, and instead highlighted many of the issues that had occurred. Showing her readers to not be afraid to stand up for what is right, and don’t follow others who represent something odiously. As a final thought, would one rather be part of the ordinary white folks in Maycomb that believes in something that causes nothing but turmoil just because everybody else does, or someone like Harper lee that speaks out for what she believes is
Harper Lee's ‘To kill a Mockingbird’ explores the prejudicial issues which plague over the town Maycomb. Harper Lee uses the trial of Tom Robinson a black man accused of rape on a young white girl, Mayella as a central theme to portray the prominence of racial discrimination in Maycomb. The racial prejudice is also widely shown through the characterisation of Atticus. Having Scout as the narrator allows Harper Lee to highlight the gender inequity through a youthful unbiased perspective. The chauvinistic attitudes and prejudiced views of most of the town’s folk leaves Maycombs social hierarchy in an unfair order, victimising many of the town’s people due to their socially non-conforming habits some ‘socially unaccepted people’ including Boo