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Answering a specific question from the novelTo Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - Essay Example

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He was believed to have stabbed his father with a pair of scissors fifteen years after his father imprisoned him in the house. His father insisted not to throw Boo in the asylum after the Boo got in trouble with the law, instead…
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Answering a specific question from the novelTo Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
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Boo Radley was the town’s mysterious character. He was believed to have stabbed his father with a pair of scissors fifteen years after his father imprisoned him in the house. His father insisted not to throw Boo in the asylum after the Boo got in trouble with the law, instead he locked him in their house. There was no known indication whether Boo was insane or not enough to merit a conclusion that he was imprisoned because of his craziness. Because of his reclusion, he remains a mystery and people were quick to gossip about him. His monstrosity was stated by Jem, that he was “about six feet tall, judging from his tracks; he dined on raw squirrels and any cats he could catch, that’s why his hands are bloodstained…There was a long jagged scar that ran across his face; what teeth he had were yellow and rotten, his eyes popped and he drooled most of the time.” But was he really a monster who deserved to be imprisoned?
Since there was no clear indication whether Boo was insane or not, we cannot easily define the purpose for his imprisonment. What we know is that his father does not want him in the asylum. He might not have been crazy during the earlier days but who wouldn’t go crazy if you are kept from the outside world for decades? This was understood by Gill when he asked his friends how they would feel “if you’d been shut up for a hundred years with nothing but cats to eat?” This implied that the people really believed he was crazy. But crazy or not, it was just plain mean to imprison someone in the house. If he was crazy, it was actually better if he was left in the asylum for treatment. And there, he would have the appropriate environmental and social conditions needed by those people with disorder. With this, I don’t think there was any good thing about his father and brother’s way of protecting him, if that was what they insist on doing. And I agree with Scout when she understood “why Boo Radley’s stayed shut in his house all this time…it’s because he wants to stay inside” to escape the horrible things that the townspeople can do to each other. Read More
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