The Social History Of Maycomb Essay, Research Paper
The Social History Of Maycomb
Maycomb is said to have a very ridged social structure. Some people would describe it as a social triangle. In this piece of work I will try to explain that structure using comments made by Jem.
At the top of the social pyramid are the people that Jem describes as the normal folk, like themselves and the neighbours. These people would include Miss Stephanie, Mrs Dubose, The Radleys and Miss Maudie. However, we have found out that the Radleys are considered outsiders from the community because they don t tend to socialise. Jem and Scout had never seen any of the Radleys outside their house until he saw Boo Radley, or Arthur Radley, one night when Miss Maudie s house catches on fire.
The next people down on the social scale are the people who are Like the cunninghams, out in the woods . These people are quite poor, but still have self respect and certain rules. For instance, on Jem s first day at school, Walter Cunningham has no lunch, so his teacher offers to lend him some money to run down to the shops for food. However, he does not accept the money because he know he cant pay her back.
Below the Cunnighams are the people such as the Ewells. These are people who live down in the dumps and have special rules that they live by. Rules such as they can hunt all year round and keep what they kill. Also, Burris Ewell and the other Ewell children, only have to go to school for one day each year. They don t care what people think of them and they live their lives however they want.
At the bottom of the ladder are the blacks. In the story we don t here much about the blacks, except that Atticus is defending one in court. Because of this, Atticus is called a nigger lover by some members of the community.
In simple terms, and in the words of Jem; Our kind of folk don t like the Cunninghams, the Cunninghams don t like the Ewells and the Ewells hate and despise the coloured folk.