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To kill a mockingbird - Essay Example

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Summary
What Ms. Lee considered to be a simple love story is one of the most-read books, but not by women seeking a romance novel. It is so compelling to all levels of education, all…
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To kill a mockingbird
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To kill a mockingbird

Download file to see previous pages... Whether well-meaning or ill intentioned the town’s journey spanning three years reveals both optimistic and pessimistic sides of human behavior, and teaches that you must look within yourself – not to your neighbors - to decide what is right and wrong.
Set in the Bible belt southern state of Alabama in the 1930’s, To Kill a Mockingbird focuses on the town of Maycomb and the racial tension of a lawyer defending a black man accused of raping a white woman. Though everyone knows the black man, Tom Robinson, is innocent, times have not progressed sufficiently that a white woman would be proven to be a liar over the word of a black man. Several townspeople know that this thinking is wrong, but only one white person openly flaunts his beliefs that blacks should be treated no different than white folks. This man is Mr. Dolphus Raymond. Scorned by whites for living with a black woman and producing mixed children, Mr. Raymond doesn’t have an easy time of it with the black population, either. He is, however, one of the few people who live what they believe in and try to set an example for others who might change the ways of the future. Despite his preference for the company of Negroes, Mr. Raymond is respectful of the inability of the white people to comprehend his way of life and therefore pretends to be a drunk. As he explains to Jem, Dill and Scout one day when they discover his secret, “It helps folks if they can latch onto a reason. When I come to town… folks can cay Dolphus Raymond’s in the clutches of whiskey – that’s why he won’t change his ways” (p. 204). It is a unspoken (and mostly unknown) compromise that allows the town folk to pity him instead of hating him.
Another contribution to the story is that of ignorance and how it can be used to shame others or to learn to “put yourself in their shoes” as Atticus suggests several times throughout the novel. One example of this ignorance is the plight of Miss Caroline ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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