Symbolic Mockingbirds Essay examples

Symbolic Mockingbirds Essay examples

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Symbolic Mockingbirds

Symbolism is used extensively in the novel To Kill a Mockingbird. The theme of prejudice in the novel can be best perceived through the symbol of the mockingbird. Atticus advised his children that if they went hunting for birds to "shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird" (96). Miss Maudie explains this further by saying that "mockingbirds don't do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don't eat up people's gardens, don't nest in corncribs, they don't do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That's why it's a sin to kill a mockingbird" (96). Bluejays are considered to be the bullies of the bird world. They are very loud, territorial and aggressive. The bluejays represent the prejudiced bullies of Maycomb, such us Bob Ewell. Mockingbirds, on the other hand, are innocent and all they do is sing beautiful songs; they would not harm anyone.

Tom Robinson is an example of a mockingbird. Tom never harms anything or anyone. The only mistake Tom made was to help Mayella and hack wood. Mayella accused Tom of raping her. When asked if Tom was the man who raped her, she replied and said that he "most certainly is" (192). He is unmistakably innocent, but still, those around him must sin and kill a mockingbird. "Tom was a dead man the minute Mayella Ewell opened her mouth and screamed" (247). After Tom was killed for attempting to escape from prison, Mr Underwood wrote in an editorial that...

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