“To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee as teaching material Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 7 January 2017

“To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee as teaching material

There have been plenty of opinions and discussions around the statement if the well-known novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee should be used as teaching material. A number of teachers have decided to use the book in classes but there are likewise several strong arguments for banning it in the education. Some claim that this is a novel that “every adult should read before they die”; while others prefer to say “this is a dangerous book”. Due to the somber, mighty but significant themes that the book brings up have resulted in that people have got an eye-opener if “To Kill a Mockingbird” is proper to occur in children’s hands. But the advantages weigh out the disadvantages. To kill a mockingbird should not be banned from schools since the novel reflects and includes the American segregated history in a trustworthy way that students can understand and as lively discussions likely will occur, possible repetitions from the past will be prevented.

Since the release in the 1960s, the book has become a part of classroom study due to the instructive themes brought up in the book. Examples of these themes are racial injustice, courage, compassion and the destruction of innocence. However, due to the controversial nature of these themes, some schools have chosen to ban the book from education. Amongst these are the schools of the Canadian province Nova Scotia who defends their point of view with following statement quoted from the book “Bloom’s Guides: To Kill a Mockingbird – new Edition”:

“The terminology in this novel subjects students to humiliating experiences that rob them of their self-respect and the respect of their peers. The word ‘Nigger’ is used 48 times [in] the novel…We believe that the English Language Arts curriculum in Nova Scotia must enable all students to feel comfortable with ideas, feelings and experiences presented without fear of humiliation … To Kill a Mockingbird is clearly a book that no longer meets these goals and therefore must no longer be used for classroom instruction.”

To not enlighten and discuss the true history may result into speculations around the not comfortable students and pointed them out because the school “is not able” to read the book because of them.

Lately, ideas how to censor the novel has been presented. The author, speaker and public policy expert Anthony Jerrod discussed in the article “Should Huck Finn and To Kill a Mockingbird be Censored?” if the “n” word should be replaced with “slave” in the book “To Kill a Mockingbird” to be more adapted to today’s modern society. Jerrod claimed that critics mean that a modern copy “will result in more people being able to truly enjoy these narratives”. The risk with modifying the past can replace the emotions and the truly message Harper Lee wrote. Instead of erasing the history the society should focus on how, to in an accurate, way bring up the book’s content in a way black people can feel comfortable with. What we have done in the past can not be changed however we learn and comprehend from it.

The book focuses on many sensitive themes that pupils may feel uncomfortable to read about. The fact that people in the novel are separated based on the skin color is upsetting in the modern society. In the book black people are discriminated which may lead to consequences as discomfort and pointed out while reading about it. Feelings, thoughts and ideas from the olden times become current once again. By realizing the surprisingly fact that it was only seventy-five years ago the occurrences took place in the society and not in an imaginary book, feels frightening. The elder perhaps remember how the segregation reflected their days in the past but the younger generations have not experienced it in the same extent and by removing the disrespect details it will result in further forgetfulness.

“To Kill a Mockingbird” has become one of the world most famed books by a reason. The novel counts both as a fiction and a lesson in history and is therefore the remarkably accurate school material. When the class discusses the book the pupils might understand the segregation heightens and realize why this is a sensitive topic. The novel will not go in one ear and go out the other. The plot facilitates the reader to identify itself with the central figures leading to a greater understanding and empathy for the happenings. We have a responsibility to declare the inaccuracies we have committed. To use the original “To Kill a Mockingbird” in classes moves the discussion and development of equal rights, in several aspects, forward and increases the awareness of how we do not want our society.

Free “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee as teaching material Essay Sample


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  • University/College: University of Chicago

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Date: 7 January 2017

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