Atticus is a mockingbird for the Maycomb society. He has the correct attitude towards different races. In Tom Robinson’s case, he provides strong arguments Tom’s accusation and proves that Tom Robinson did not rape and harm Mayella Ewell. Even though Atticus failed to restore Tom back to Tom’s family due to racial discrimination existed commonly in Maycomb in 1930s, Atticus leads the society to take the first small step in the right direction in the battle against racial discrimination, according to the quote stated by Miss Maudie, “Atticus Finch won’t win, he can’t
Tom Robinson’s character exemplifies the mockingbird because he is a black man who is denied justice based on racial prejudice. After Mayella Ewell accuses Tom of rape, there is no way for him to be judged fairly because the narrow-minded, white townspeople are unable to get past their prejudices towards blacks. At his trial, Tom’s lawyer, Atticus, argues,
To begin, "The one place where a man ought to get a square deal is in a courtroom, be he any color of the rainbow, but people have a way of carrying their resentments right into a jury box" (Lee 224). Tom Robisnon becomes a victim of racism when he is wrongly convicted. Tom is wrongly convicted of raping Mayella Ewell because of the color of his skin. Jury members only convict Tom because he is black, not because of the evidence presented in the trial. Secondly, "If I hear one more peep outa my girl Helen about not bein able to walk this road I'll have you in jail before sundown" (Lee 253). This is important because Mr. Ewell harasses her on her way to work for Mr. Deas, he does not even let her walk in front of his house, he even threatens her to not go to work. This shows that Helen has had a hard time finding work because she is associated with Tom. If Tom had not been wrongly accused of raping Mayella, then Helen would not face the harsh discrimination from the Maycomb community. All in all, Helen and Tom Robinson have a really hard time because of the effects of racism on them.
Atticus says that even though Tom is innocent, the all-white jury will find him guilty anyway because he is a black man. The people of Maycomb are livid that their best lawyer would defend a black man who “raped” a white woman. Up until now, Maycomb has been displayed as a happy little town, it’s been seen as nothing but positive. The racist and unflattering side of Maycomb has been exposed as they attack the Finches. Even some of the Finches’ family members disapproves of Atticus’s choice. The town believes that Atticus defending a black man puts the Finch name to shame. They believed that he shouldn’t have done what he
White people believed to treat them like “trash” and they are influencing their kids to do the same which puts an impact on the community . The white people in Maycomb , Albama believe that black people are “ Filthy Beings” . Tom Robinson is a prime example in this book because , just because he’s an african american he loses the case of raping a white girl by the name of Mayella Ewell . Tom was given an defense attorney , which is Atticus and he was chosen by the judge . The law and system is so messed up that the judge picked a white man to be his attorney . Atticus Finch is a white man who is an experienced lawyer . Atticus is trying his best to win Tom’s case . All of a sudden he immediately loses the case . When the trial was over , Mr . Underwood said “Atticus has used every tool available to free men to save Tom Robinson , but in the secret courts of men’s hearts Atticus had no case . Tom was a dead man the minute Mayella Ewell opened her mouth and screamed . “ (241)
The whole town of Maycomb is racist, which makes Atticus’s job harder trying to defend Tom Robinson against the word of a white man.Tom Robinson’s case is unjust since he is black and the majority of Maycomb revert to the stereotype that all blacks are immoral and criminals. “Quote” shows that it is a situation where little is possible to do when defending a black man because the town of Maycomb is deeply affected by racism they tend to only make decisions based on the race and so immediately think Tom Robinson is guilty, that he did indeed raped Mayella when there was so much evidence to prove otherwise. This is challenging for Atticus, since he has to persuade everyone to pretend there is no stereotype about blacks and that they are human
First of all, Tom Robinson’s family has been greatly affected by the case. After being convicted, in addition to being sent away to jail, his wife Helen also faces discrimination. Jem asks Calpurnia, “I know Tom Robinson’s in jail an’ he’s done somethin’ awful, but why won’t folks hire Helen?” She responds with “It’s because of what folks say Tom’s done,[...]Folks aren’t anxious to—to have anything to do with any of his family”(chap.12). Racism being the reason that Tom goes to jail, and also the reason that no one will hire Helen anymore, proving how despair to the community through racism. Because of this prejudice, an innocent family becomes social outcasts within the town, which would be detrimental because in a small town like Maycomb, people need to stick together to be able to live a good life. Another way in which racism victimizes someone, when Bob Ewell spits on Atticus. He was leaving the post office: “Mr. Ewell approached him, cursed him, spat
Atticus is appointed to defend a black man named Tom Robinson who has been accused of raping Mayella Ewell, a white woman. She is a member of the Ewell family, who is looked down upon by Maycomb society and referred to as "white trash." Atticus knows that Tom has almost no chance because he is black and will be tried by an all white jury. Nevertheless, he wants to help him reveal the truth.
For example on page 118-120, Scout and Jem attend Calpurnia's church service. Being white children in a black church, Scout and Jem further stand out. “Lula stopped, but she said, "You ain't got no business bringin' white chillun here—they got their church, we got our in. It is our church, ain't it, Miss Cal?” “...When I looked down the pathway again, Lula was gone. In her place was a solid mass of colored people. One of them stepped from the crowd. It was Zeebo, the garbage collector. "Mister Jem," he said, "we're mighty glad to have you all here. Don't pay no 'tention to Lula, she's contentious because Reverend Sykes threatened to church her. She's a troublemaker from way back, got fancy ideas an' haughty ways—we're mighty glad to have you all." page 119. This is the first occasion that Scout and Jem encounter racism first-hand. Jem and Scout feel as if they're the objects of somebody else's racism, which place them in a rare position. Henceforth, Scout and Jem understand that no matter what they do or how persistent they are, they will still be dealt like a superior of the black community and they see this owing to perspective. Scout and Jem noticed the black community of Maycomb County’s of view by being the minority in the black church. Scout and Jem obtain the gist of how the black community feels, but they yet never actually will feel exactly how the black community feels. Thanks to changing their
We see how this empathetic approach is further transmitted to Jem and Scout in the scene when the children to go Calpurnia’s church and experience her way of life first hand. Before this experience, Jem and Scout had a narrow view of the African American community and the degree of segregation that existed. When they went to Cal’s church, the children experienced a sort of culture shock, where they quickly realized how different their lives were from people like Cal, where for the first time they were the minority. They also realized that Cal “led a modest double life” (lee 142), where the way she acted around them, was different from the way she acted around those of her community. The fact that Cal could read and speak “correctly,” yet didn’t put herself above others that were illiterate, was interesting to Jem and Scout. It wasn’t until they experienced her life by “walking in her shoes” that they were fully able to grasp the multitude of the issues that were currently being debated within their own community and the case of Tom Robinson. It allowed for them to see the disparities between different cultures through a new lens, while also
Maycomb's unjust beliefs on race determined the outcome of Tom Robinson's trail. Atticus´s defence was more than enough to set Tom free, but Maycomb's ignorance and narrow-minded view on African Americans set an innocent man to jail. Atticus told Jem "If you had been on that jury, son, and eleven other boys like you, Tom would be a free man" (Lee 295). The jury members had been affected by the ignorance of society. They convicted Tom because when they grow up they learned racists beliefs and they do not know any other way. In Maycomb, racism is a normal part of everyday life. When kids at Scouts school call Atticus a n***** lover. Atticus explains to Scout what it means, "Scout," said Atticus, "n*****-lover is just one of those terms that don't mean anything—like snot-nose. It's hard to explain—ignorant, trashy people use it when they think somebody's favoring Negroes over and above themselves.¨ (144). The racists views and attitudes determined the guilty verdict of Tom. In Atticus closing argument, he says "She was white, and she tempted a Negro. She did something that in our society is unspeakable: she kissed a black man¨(272). Society has a set of rules which are not written but known, these rules tend to be ignorant and impartial. When it comes to race and the misguided beliefs about race, there is a profusion of ignorance. The expectations on race set by society affect the actions and events of life.
Mayella Ewell claimed Tom Robinson beat and raped her. Both of Bob’s and Mayella’s testimonies have many loose holes and have multiple things that don't add up. For example,Tom not being able to use his right arm, but Mayella claimed he got on to her, beat and choked her. “And so, a quiet, humble, respectable negro, who has had the unmitigated TEMERITY to feel sorry for a white woman, has had to put his word against two white peoples. The defendant is not guilty. But somebody in this courtroom is...now, gentlemen, in this country our courts are the great levelers. In our courts, all men are created equal. I'm no idealist to believe firmly in the integrity of our courts and of our jury system. That's no ideal to me. That is a living, working reality!...” (Lee 273). This paragraph reveals the theme of racism in the city of Maycomb because Atticus has to re-explain why Tom is innocent. He has to keep telling them that the evidence from the Ewells don't add up, there was no positive medical kit, and Tom's story doesn't add up with the Ewells. It shows racism because it shows how far the people of Maycomb will go to make a black person suffer. It shows how much hate is filled with the whites of Maycomb. Tom Robinson is eventually shot 17 times by a police officer, and leaves behind his wife and three children. The outcome of Tom Robinson is horrible. But it shows how little the
Firstly, Tom Robinson is just one character that is prejudged in the novel. He is accused of raping a white girl named Mayella and it is a problem to the jury that a black man is trying to defend himself in court. Atticus realizes how Tom is being treated unfairly and that it is uncommon for African Americans and white people to associate with each other. During Atticus’s speech, Mayella is accused of lying in her testimony when “she kissed a black man [which is] something that in our society is unspeakable” (Lee 272). The black man who Atticus refers to is Tom. He is ridiculed and judged by several people in the book and he gets all this
Atticus displays acts of personal courage in his willingness to keep others safe and his response to racism based threats. Many of the citizens of Maycomb County and its surrounding area were upset about Atticus, a lawyer, taking the defense case of Tom Robinson, a black man who was accused of raping a white woman. Mr. Link Deas and Mr. Heck Tate, along with some other men in Maycomb, come to tell Atticus about the Old Sarum lynch mob coming to kill Tom. The next night, Atticus goes down to the county jail and tells the mob to go home and leave Tom alone (Lee 194 and 202). The lynch mob comes to kill Tom, so they could potentially hurt Atticus, too. The amount of courage Atticus has to display to defend Tom outside of the courthouse and stand up to a dangerous mob of men is extremely high, considering the risks he takes. Atticus comes home from work one day, after the trial is over, and is approached by Mr. Bob Ewell, the victim's father: "According to Miss Stephanie Crawford, however, Atticus was leaving the post office when Mr. Ewell approached him, cursed him, spat on him, and threatened to kill him... Atticus's peaceful reaction probably prompted him to inquire,'Too proud to fight, you [Negro-lover]?' Miss Stephanie said Atticus said, 'No, too old', put his hands in his pockets, and strolled on"(291). Mr. Ewell is upset that Atticus had tried to prove that Tom was innocent and that Mr. Ewell had hurt his own daughter. He also believes that
Earlier in the novel, Scout relates that Atticus views the Ewell family as “the disgrace of Maycomb” (33). However, as the Ewells are a white family, they are having a higher social status. During the trial, it is declared that Mayella seduces Tom Robinson, and her father, Bob Ewell, thought that his daughter would shift her warm feelings for a black man. In addition, Bob Ewell’s reaction to his daughter kissing to Tom Robinson displays the fear of miscegenation. Atticus, however, strives for justice. Atticus explains the ugly truth to Jem and Scout: “In our courts, when it’s a white man’s word against a black man’s, the white man always wins” (251-252). Atticus shows disgust with white people taking advantage of a black person’s ignorance” (252). Tom Robinson is facing a trial and the death sentence because he is black. Furthermore, Atticus makes it clear to his children that racism exists and tells Scout and Jem: 'In our courts, when it's a white man's word against a black man's, the white man always