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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Satisfactory Essays
To Kill A Mockingbird

Many say that the central theme in the movie To Kill A Mockingbird is southern society and racism, but the central theme is the mockingbird, of which racism is a small part. Atticus Finch, a lawyer and father of two children living in Maycomb, Alabama, says: “they say that to kill a mockingbird is a sin because all the mockingbird does is sing for us all day.” The mockingbird symbolizes something or someone who is attacked by society unjustly, and that includes two characters.
First, the mockingbird theme holds true for Tom Robinson. Tom is a black man who works as a field hand and is charged with raping a white girl and put on trial. Atticus defends Tom in the trial and makes it clear that Tom is innocent and even proves that someone else was responsible for the girl’s wounds: her father. Even though Atticus has proved Tom innocent, he is still declared guilty, put in jail, and sentenced to death.
Another character, Boo Radley, also fits the mold of the mockingbird. Boo was probably just a normal boy who was unfortunately born to parents who weren’t the nicest in town and liked to keep to themselves. It was rumored that, as a child, Boo was cutting out articles in the newspaper for a scrapbook and when his father walked by, Boo plunged the scissor blades into Mr. Radley’s leg, took them out, and just kept cutting the newspaper like nothing had happened. From that point on, his parents kept him locked in the house. The whole town was convinced that he was something of a monster and came out at night peeking in peoples’ windows. It was even rumored that he wilted every flower he passed. Throughout the course of the book, Jem, Atticus’ son, finds little treasures in the hollow of the tree by their house: a watch, a ball of string, a spelling bee medal. When Jem is attacked by a drunken man one night, Boo Radley comes to his rescue and finally shows himself, and it is evident that he has been the one leaving the treasures in the tree in an effort to bond with Atticus’ children.
Why are these innocent people being judged by society? Surprisingly, it’s the same reason that racism started: people whose lives were secure and comfortable started to become threatened by something different that might alter their lives and felt the need to remove the threat.
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