The Meaning To Kill a Mockingbird Essay Example


In the book “To kill a mockingbird” Harper Lee uses several elements and themes throughout the book to make it enjoyable for readers. The book is about Scout Finch, an eight year old girl who lives with her brother Jem and her father Atticus. Throughout the book, the theme develops more clearer, especially at the trial of Tom Robinson, an African-American being accused of raping a white woman. Atticus is defending Tom and gives clear evidence he is innocent, but is convicted anyway. This conveys that the theme of the book is to not kill mockingbirds and how African-Americans are impacted. 

To kill a mockingbird has several meanings. In the book, when Atticus gave Jem and Scout rifles for Christmas, he tells them to not shoot at mockingbirds, as it is a sin. Atticus adds on that mockingbirds are innocent and do not hurt anybody, so there’s no reason to shoot at them. This theme later goes on at the trial with Tom Robinson. The person accusing him of the crime was Mr. Ewell, the victims father. It was clear that Mr. Ewell did it due to the fact  he’s left-handed and the injuries are from someone who is left handed and the fact he was drunk. Atticus proved to the jury that Tom was innocent, but is convicted anyway. Tom Robinson was later shot and killed in prison after he tried to escape. Many readers are often confused  throughout the book on why the book is called such. It doesn’t become clear until the end. Atticus’ message is a metaphor for what happens at the trial. The mockingbird represents Tom Robinson who is clearly innocent, but yet is convicted and killed for the fact that he was African-American. 

This moves on to how African-Americans were treated in the thirties in the south. To kill a Mockingbird takes place in Alabama during the Great Depression. The book shows several counts of racial prejudice, with discrimination and the unfair trial of Tom Robinson. Tom’s framed for the crime because everyone would think he did it. Even after all the evidence Atticus gave during the trial, he still is convicted. It didn’t matter how much evidence or proof that Tom was innocent, the jury has  a racial bias. If Tom was white, he probably wouldn’t have been accused of the crime, or been seen as innocent. Mr. Ewell easily got away with the crime because he is  a powerful white man, and during that time, they always win. Racial prejudice is later seen when Tom tried to escape prison and got killed. If Tom was white, he probably wouldn’t have been shot. Lee used this theme her book to show racial prejudice in the south during the Great Depression, when it was very extreme and more harmful than the sixties and even today. 

Harper Lee throughout the book put messages that would be more important at the end, With Atticus telling Jem and Scout about not killing Mockingbirds and the constant discrimination that happened against African-Americans. Lee wants to show two messages to the reader that they need. That do not harm the innocent and to be aware of how others are treated and how it impacts society. Even though the book took place in the thirties, the  messages still affect life today and could be used by anyone.

 

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