Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird is not a codex worth throwing away. Judging a book by its cover is a fatal mistake. Within the confinements of the negligible town Macomb, Lee demonstrates many of the world’s conflicting issues. The novel illustrates a society that is supremely, staggeringly unfair, especially in the 1 sass where racism is part of the very fabric of society. Harper broadcasts many concealed controversies, such as racism and prejudice. All throughout the novel those constant themes pop up everywhere.
It can be something like bullying, segregation, or sexism.
Even on school grounds conflict occurs. Such as Scout the main character fighting with a child named Cecil and the teacher Miss Caroline Fisher having altercations with the children. The Raddled, Aunt Alexandra, and the two poorest families in Macomb are blatant examples of these issues. Climatically, every character experiences some type or form of racism and prejudice, pertaining to discrimination, hatred, and economical standings which are portrayed thoroughly in To Kill a Mockingbird.
One of the many forms of racism and bullying that pops up is the usage of the word “Niger. The main character Scout deals with a kid named Cecil Jacob. He calls her ether a “Niger-lovely (Lee 100) because Attic’s, Scouts father is defending an African American man by the name of Tom Robinson- “I’m simply defending a negro- his name’s Tom Robinson. ” (Lee 1 00) Because Attic’s is defending Tom, he is enduring ample amounts of criticism from the people. Attic’s was even considered to be apart of the lower social pyramid. “… Your daddy was a disgrace an’ that Niger ought hang from the water-tank. ” (Lee 102). Attic’s believes in equality in all races, however his belief are looked down upon. Your father’s no better than the naggers and trash he works for. ” (Lee 135). The people in Macomb compare him to “naggers. ” They are degrading Attic’s because he is standing up for his ideas. In conjunction with the last statement made, notice how freely the word “Niger” is used. Line the household of the Finches, when Scout was voluntarily enunciating the word “Niger. ” Attic’s corrected her about the use of that word and said not to simply spread that word. Unknowing of the power in that word, yet it is used like an everyday noun. “Be it a Niger dog… ” (Lee 75).
They even described an animal with a word used in slavery times or towards Africans. To describe an animal in such a vulgar way is truly disturbing. Sing the N word to call a dog goes to show that the word Niger is so common. The dog Tim Johnson was a very old dying dog. Furthermore, Jeer, Scouts older brother as well has used the word “Niger” without a second thought to it. “l anti never seen a Niger snowman before” ( Lee 89). With no hesitation or second thought, Niger is said fluently amongst their tongues. Another incident of racism that happened was when Gem, Dill, and Scout wanted to discover who Boo was.
At this time, summer was ending and Dill had to go back home. While attempting to find out who Boo was, Mr.. Readied(Nathan) foils their attempts by coming out with a hooting and fires into the air. Once the youngsters escaped out of fear, according to Miss. Stephanie, Nathan said. ” … If anybody sees a white Niger around, that’s the one. ” (Lee 72). It clearly states the children were the ones messing around on the property. Altogether it seems as if the usage of the word “Niger is more openly used than it should really and the fact is everything are the African American’s faults.
In this tome, , discrimination too was brought out. Despite the fact of being an extremely poor community, there were people even poorer. The African Americans were looked down upon very commonly in this time frame. Most Africans weren’t allowed to be in the same house or area as the white folk. However California, the nanny of Scout and Gem live together in the Finch’s house. ” … Attic’s, Gem, and l, plus California our cook’ (Lee 6). That just goes to show how bad this era was. During the Raddled problem with the children, when Nathan came out and shot the air, it was determined to be African Americans.
He Judged so quickly to believe that the Black people had done it. This goes to show that all blame and problems resigning in Macomb is towards black people, even though they had no part in it. Not to mention the trial, Tom Robinson is accused of raping Male Lowell. He is innocent, but Tom’s judgment was guilty. During this time, it didn’t matter whether you were legitimately innocent. If you were African American, no power was granted unto them. Secondly, this form of prejudice can not be disregarded. Prejudice; segregation, is just as apparent as racism is.
In chapter two, school is beginning. In school, a new teacher appears, her name Miss Caroline Fisher. As soon as she entered the classroom she was described as . No more than twenty-one. She has bright auburn hair, pink cheeks, and wore crimson fingernail polish. (Lee 21). She was judged instantly. This woman obviously doesn’t belong in a borough like this. In a flash she is pushed away. She is basically a rich, oblivious white girl. She knows nothing of the CUL De sac Macomb. Her ideals of trying to save this town are greatly misinformed.
Her first mistake, offering a quarter to the proud Walter Cunningham, second was telling Scout that Attic’s does not know any better; since Scout could read from Attic’s teachings, and thirdly telling Burros Lowell what to do. She had no idea of their history and current life style. Because of her ignorance, she had no place in Macomb. The dents rejected her immediately. “… Anti no snot nosed SLUT of a schoolteacher… ” (Lee 37). Burros Lowell is a child who would not hesitate to attack the teacher since he was a boy of no respect and very dishonest.
He crushed her hopes of helping the town by showing her ignorance of the situation of the town. Another form; a more accurate presentation is the Raddled family and Boo Raddled. The Raddled family is the most apparent example of segregation in Macomb. The family has had a very bad past incorporating Boo, and creating an image as the viewers to perceive that their property is forbidden; it is out of the question. Anything at all pertaining the Raddled family was off limits to the children and the towns people. No one goes by the house and no one is allowed to even make contact with them.
The family is on the outskirts of town being shoved away from society; being shunned- “Go down and stand in front of the Raddled place” (Lee 92) said Attic’s. During this time of the book, Miss Media’s house was on fire, Attic’s wants the children to be safe. He is telling the children to go to the edges of town to be as far away from the fire. Having said that, inferring so it is clear that the Raddled house is at the outskirts of town. Increasing the separation of the family. Additionally with the Raddled family, Boo has a category of his own. Boo is a character brought up numerous of moments.
He is known as a “phantom. ” Boo is isolated from the rest of the world for stabbing his father. “According to Miss Stephanie, Boo was sitting in the living-room cutting some items from the Macomb Tribune to paste in his scrapbook. His father entered the room. As Mr. Raddled passed by, Boo drove the scissors into his parent’s leg, pulling them out, wiped them on his pants, and resumed his activities. ” (Lee 13). Just knowing this little piece of information gives off an instantaneous opinion. Boo is forced to be confined in his house forever due to his actions. The sheriff hadn’t the heart to put him in jail alongside the Negroes, so Boo was locked in the courthouse basement. ” (Lee 14). “Mr.. Raddled had him chained to the bed most of the time. ” (Lee 14). (Again racial terms are still popping up in any scenario proving how racially discouraging this time period was. ) Misstatements Crawford, the gossiper, always has to make a big deal out of everything. She creates Boo to be this persona as a big, sinister, dark man. Gem even said “Boo was about six-and-a- Alfa feet tall, judging from his tracks; he dined on raw squirrels and any cats he could catch, that’s why his hands were bloodstained…
There was a long jagged scar that ran across his face; what teeth he had were yellow and rotten his eyes popped… ” (Lee 16). The children fear Boo as if he is some kind of villain. “Every night sound I heard from my cot on the back porch was magnified three-fold; every scratch of feet on gravel was Boo Raddled seeking revenge, every passing Negro laughing in the night was Boo Raddled loose and after us; insects splashing against the screen were Boo Reader’s insane fingers kicking the wire to pieces… ” (Lee 74). He is being judged by his past, without knowing the story.
Just feeding off of this, Macomb has come to show malice towards him. They do not want him out of that house ever. He’s a menace to them. Boo is detached from humanity being forever tossed aside, he is segregated. One other Moreover, another type of prejudice is sexism. In the first part of To Kill a Mockingbird Scout was always told on how to act. Scout has always been told to act less lady like by her brother Jean. Most of her childhood life she never had a motherly influence besides California for her ann.. However California wants Scout to imitate Gem.
Even Gem does not want Scout to be more proper. On the other hand her Aunt Alexandra, prefers her and yearns her to be more ladylike. ” Act like a lady’ (Lee 76. When Aunt Alexandra moves in she says, “We decided that it would be best for you to have some feminine influence. It won’t be many years, Jean Louise, before you become interested in clothes and boys]. ” (Lee 170). Then in chapter 1 2 Gem suddenly wants Scout to become more ladylike contradicting what he has said before. ” It’s time you started been’ a girl and acting right! ” (Lee 153).
Scout then becomes in a bind and has no idea what to do. With California on her about being more like Gem, her aunt making her be more feminine, and deal then having to deal with the old Seems thoughts and middle schooled him. She is in a bind. This also stresses the importance of becoming a “lady”. To be a lady in the south obviously means more than simply being a female; one has to look and act the part according to the people of that time. Even Attic’s, a man who stands for equality, makes sexist comments of his own; “l guess it’s to protect our frail women from sordid cases like Tom’s. ” Lee 269).
Attic’s’ remarks prove that sexism and gender roles are a norm in society, and their offensiveness is not greatly considered. It’s not just the men who place women in their roles; it’s the women themselves who take it upon themselves to enforce these rules. Even though racism has been tackled in society, it is clearly stated that women are just starting to break free of long held values that have been oppressed by them in the past. Women do not receive any type of rights. To conclude, chapter 23, some strong remarks towards women are made. Attic’s said Miss Maude can’t server on a jury cause she’s a woman–” (Lee 269).
Jury duty can not be served by women. Ultimately claiming that the males are the dominant sex. Lastly, this part of the opus was guaranteed to turn many heads. In chapter 1 2, when The Finches- Gem and Scout visit Scaloppini’s church, a lot of racism and prejudice takes place. At their arrival they start out with glares and stares. “You anti got no business bringing’ white chillingџthey got their church, we got urn’s. ” (Lee 158). A woman named Lull, asks California brought the children along. ” I wants to know why you bringing’ white chilling to the Niger church” (Lee 158). She disagrees with their well-being in the church itself.
Scout asks many questions after the service towards California relevant to the trial case, and one very particular question that was intriguing. Why does California talk to African Americans differently than she does to white people? Even in speech African Americans must change their town towards the light skinned folk. In chapter 12 we learn much more about Scaloppini’s life and past. We come to realize even in education, the black community was not allowed anything. In conclusion, Harper Lee’s To Kill a MockingBird renders the message of how atrocious racism and prejudice was back them.
No matter what kind of form it was, it played a large role in the public. Through the characters, Harper expressed her ideas about those themes well. She manages to convey her message completely. In the end It is credible to see that the whole book revolves around racism and prejudice. How spectacular that she was TABLE to show us the many appearances it can uphold. Everyone encounters some type of it like sex, race, mistakes, stupidity, and segregation. Altogether the story was well made to present how disheartening it was back in those times.
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