, Research Paper
Hate in To Kill A Mocking Bird
At the time it was written, To Kill a Mockingbird was looked down upon since there was so much hatred towards negroes. Few people in the United States realized the unjustified prejudice against the negro. The novel focuses on how the main character, Atticus Finch, deals with the controversy surrounding his actions and how he tries to shelter his family from it.
The book’s climax, where it is brought to a final solution, takes place at the trial. A woman named Mayella Ewell, accuses a black man, named Tom Robinson, of rape. In truth, these claims are false, but she knows she can get away with it, since the people in those days had the utmost respect for white women. Black men were looked down upon as still being slaves, even if they weren’t in shackles. The main character, Atticus Finch, defends Tom throughout the case. He comes under fire and is commonly known in the neighborhood as a “Nigger lover” (author s name and page #) for defending Tom. His children’s friends make fun of them at school since their father is defending Tom. Atticus tries his best to be a fair lawyer like he always was, and knows that Tom didn’t commit the rape. The trial comes around, and Mayella Ewell is very confident she will win the case because of her standing in society as a respectable woman who would never lie over her honor. When it comes time for Atticus to question Mayella, he proves that indeed Tom couldn’t have committed the rape. Mayella is silent, and then the jury leaves to come up with a verdict. Although they know Tom was innocent, the case now becomes a trial of honor; of whom to say is wrong. When they come back, they find Tom guilty. He is sentenced to be hung, and it is carried out. Thus ends the climax, but not the moral.
Afterward, Mayella’s father, Bob Ewell guarantees revenge against Atticus for having proved his daughter a liar. As Atticus’ children are walking home from the Halloween pageant, they realize they are being followed and soon they are attacked. The next thing they know is that they are being carried home. Jem has a broken arm and Scout a couple of bruises. In Jem’s sick room, Scout notices the presence of the man who carried Jem home and discovers that the man is Boo Radley. Boo Radley is a mysterious next-door neighbor who they never really talked to. However, they know he is a very friendly person by the way he leaves candy for them on the way to school in a hollow tree outside his house. She later realizes that he had saved their lives. She accepts him as a friend and tells Atticus that he is “Real nice” (page #). Atticus agrees and reminds her that most people are nice when you get to know them.
I enjoyed reading this book, and if nothing else it opened my eyes to the common prejudices that still exist in today’s society. The book derives its name from when Scout, who serves as the narrator, and her older brother Jem both receive air rifles for Christmas. They are given specific instructions never to kill a mockingbird because it sings beautiful songs and does no damage to anyone. I realized that this can be contrasted from the plot of the book, when Atticus defends Tom.