Essay On Discrimination In To Kill A Mockingbird

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To Kill A Mockingbird: Discrimination Is Destructive "Prejudices, it is well known, are most difficult to eradicate from the heart whose soil has never been loosened or fertilized by education; they grow there, firm as weeds among stones"- Charlotte Brontë. Nearly every problem and unfortunate mishap in Harper Lee's, To Kill A Mockingbird, has been somehow revolved around prejudice or discrimination. Many different forms of prejudice are found throughout the novel, with racism, sexism, and classicism the most common. The residents of Maycomb have discrimination running through their veins and were raised to be racist and sexist, without realizing. They see nothing wrong with judging other people and treating people that they find inferior harshly. Prejudice is a destructive force because it separates the people of Maycomb, both physically and mentally. Sexism is not as common a topic in comparison to racism, but does play a role in the development of the novel. This type of discrimination is expressed towards women from men and women alike. Men feel compelled to protect women from unsightly things, (Lee 221), and the women in Maycomb have the mind set that, to be a lady, they must conform to society's expectations of them. They believe they must dress, act, and speak a certain way to appease the community. Aunt Alexandra is a big believer in acting the way society expects her to and attempts to impose these values on her niece, Scout, who becomes mortified, as she has always been a tomboy and prefers spending time in the dirt. “Aunt Alexandra was fanatical on the subject of my [Scout's] attire. She said I could not possibly hope to be a lady if I wore breeches; when I said I could do nothing in a dress, she said I wasn't supposed ... ... middle of paper ... ... town as well, believe that Tom was capable of rape. The Finch children were baffled by this unfair verdict, so Atticus explains to them that even though it is not fair, whatever a white man accuses a black individual of doing, the word of the white man automatically overrules that of the black (Lee ). Discrimination played a big role in the 1930s and throughout the development of the novel, and still is not completely diminished in the 21st century. Sexism, classicism, and racism all typified the many relationships in To Kill A Mockingbird, from Aunt Alexandra wanting Scout to become a lady, to Tom Robinson's unfair court trial. Prejudices are formed because of the level of ignorance people have when they believe everything they hear from their peers without bothering to be fertilized with education, leading to a division within communities, physically and mentally.

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