The Two Communities in "To Kill a Mockingbird"

Categories: To Kill A Mockingbird

Human beings have different appearances, hobbies, likes, dislikes, talents, and idea which makes us unique. We are born in different countries, we have different races, skin colors, ethnics, gender, religion, and such is also a reason why people discriminates us instead of seeing it as our symbol from who we are. Racism is a strong element that was portrayed in an award-winning novel To Kill a mocking bird written by Harper Lee. It was published during the civil rights movement and exposed the dark elements of a southern racist society it also deals with the moral teachings of a human being whether people are essentially good or evil.

Harper Lee’s novel focuses on a large extent in a child’s perspective in understanding the world. It bridges a gap between a child’s innocence and experience. Racism is a major theme of the novel. During that era, blacks were still highly dominated members of society and were not permitted to communicate with whites in public places, and there existed a distinct black and white area of town.

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In this essay, I will be arguing that discrimination should end because it’s a real and distressing problem that continues to exist in modern society which also related to the story I mentioned above.

Social inequality is one of the elements in the novel bringing out one which leads to racism and the differences in social status are expressed through the overcomplicated social hierarchy in Maycomb, the black and white community that continuously baffles the children.

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Atticus’s family stood near the top of Maycomb’s social hierarchy, with most of the townspeople beneath them. These rigid social separations that made up so much of the adult world are revealed in title of To Kill a Mockingbird has a little literal connection to the plot because it carries a great deal of symbolic weight in the book. Throughout the book, several characters like Jem, Tom Robinson, Dill, Boo Radley, Mr. Raymond can be identified as mockingbirds because they are innocents who have been injured or destroyed through contact with evil. This connection between the novel’s main theme is made an explicit many times in the novel after Tom Robinson was shot by Mr. Underwood and he compares his death to the senseless slaughter of songbirds, and at the end of the book, Scout thinks that hurting Boo Radley would be like shooting a mockingbird. The most important part of the novel is when Miss Maudie explains to Scout that mockingbirds don’t hurt anyone but sing their hearts out for us and that’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird. The two siblings indicate that they are particularly vulnerable in the racist world of Maycomb, which often treats the fragile innocence of childhood harshly. Racism, evil, prejudice, and discrimination are present throughout the whole book.

Racism affects many characters in the book and causes dreadful events to happen. The author illustrates her strong opinion on racism through the view of a little girl named Scout growing up in a small, southern community, Maycomb. Showing the story from the first-person point of view, especially in situations like the trial, helps one understand a child’s point of view to understand the feelings of the little girl better. While growing up, Scout learns to take a positive view of the African-Americans in society. However, this view contradicts the views of the other children living in her area because they were adopted their ancestors’ prejudiced views. Another example is when Aunt Alexandria forbids Scout to play with Walter Cunningham because she sees them as good folks, but not our kind of folks. Unlike most of the other characters in the book, Scout doesn’t let things like race or wealth clouds her judgment of people. Tom Robinson losing his case, the prejudice against Atticus, and the church incident concerning Jem and Scout are all directly related to racism. Discrimination appears everywhere inside To Kill a Mockingbird, for example; Tom Robinson lost his case and got sentenced to life in prison because he was black. The jury was biased on this matter and so the result was inevitable.

Even during the beginning of the trial, everything was a lie because Mr. Ewell’s face grew scarlet, he stood up and pointed his finger at Tom Robinson the author uses the word scarlet to show that Mr. Ewell was feeling angry at Atticus for contradicting him, yet he was feeling guilty for telling a lie, following his false accusation, Mr. Ewell exploded towards Tom and Atticus to reinforce his false statement. Likewise, Atticus defending Tom’s innocence earned him continuous discrimination from the people living in Maycomb even from his own family. His battle for justice caused more problems for his daughter, Scout. She is continued defending him but the racist remarks did not stop. These remarks just showed how cruel children can be to other children. Scout feels the need to defend her father to Francis, her cousin. He was also taunting her with accusation calling her a nigger-lover. The force of racism had disrupted their lives, especially Scout, through the old fashioned and discriminative opinions of the residents of Maycomb. There is another event supporting the idea of racism in the novel, it is when Jem and Scout go to Calpurnia’s church. There, they encounter discrimination with every step they take. When Lula asks the two siblings, she says it with contempt.

Harper Lee uses racism in both directions, whites to blacks, and blacks to whites. So, it implies that both are to blame for discrimination. Lula was trying to feel a sense of pride in having a black church to go to, and now, for her, it was like the siblings came stampeding over that pride by entering the doors. Jem and Scout felt that they did not belong and wanted to go home. The most important theme of the novel remains the notion of prejudice in all of its forms. Clearly, with the Tom Robinson case, the author’s characters deal with racial prejudice head-on references to black men as niggers and boys persist throughout the story. Black people occupy the lowest class level of Maycomb society as Maycomb’s white population of every class waste no time reinforcing their rigid class rules.

In To Kill a Mockingbird, racism spread through every idea and inch of this book from the loss of Tom Robinson’s trial, the discrimination against Atticus, and the contempt for the two siblings. Racism affected everyone in this book whether they noticed it or not. This book is a warning sign, telling the world to take off its blindfold and to start seeing people for who they are.

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The Two Communities in "To Kill a Mockingbird". (2021, Aug 17). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/the-two-communities-in-to-kill-a-mockingbird-essay

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