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"Innocence" The Essay Is About Comparing The Innocence Of Mockingbirds To The Innocence Of The Characters In The Novel "To Kill A Mockingbird"

674 words - 3 pages

In Harper Lee's novel, To Kill A Mockingbird, Boo Radley, Tom Robinson, and Scout Finch display innocence, a quality of a mockingbird, through their words and actions. By the end of the book, Scouts perspective on life develops from that of a small, innocent child to that of a mature young person. Tom Robinson's naïve nature shows throughout the novel, especially during the trial when he claims to feel sorry for Mayella, a white person. Boo's innocence shines through the chapters with his child like features, such as leaving gifts in the tree for Scout and Jem.Arthur "Boo" Radley, an example of a mockingbird, does nothing but take care of the children. Despite all the crazy stories and rumors heard around town Boo cares and loves the kids very much. An intelligent child emotionally damaged by his cruel father, Boo provides an example of the threat ...view middle of the document...

Tom Robinson's naïve nature prevents him from getting out of jail when he mentions to feel sorry for Mayella, Bob Ewell's daughter, which he's accused of raping. Tom never harms anything or anyone. The only mistake Tom made is offering to help Mayella and chop wood for her. 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" (pg. 192). "Tom was a dead man the minute Mayella Ewell opened her mouth and screamed" (pg. 247).In the beginning of the novel, Scout is an innocent, good-hearted five-year-old child who has no experience with the evils of the world. As the novel progresses, Scout has contact with evil in the form of racial prejudice. The basic development of her character is governed by the question of whether she will emerge from that contact with her conscience and optimism intact or whether she will be bruised, hurt, or destroyed like Boo Radley and Tom Robinson. There are times in the novel where scouts innocence shows more than other times like when she fell asleep during her role in the play and when she didn't understand that Jem was going through some "changes". Thanks to Atticus's wisdom, Scout learns that though humanity has a great capacity for evil, it also has a great capacity for good, and that the evil can often be conquered if one approaches others with an outlook of sympathy and understanding. As the book continues, her innocence is slowly taken away. Her meetings with racial prejudice take large bites out of her purity. Still some of scout's innocence is protected by the moral voice of her father, Atticus.The title of To Kill a Mockingbird has very little literal connection to the plot, but it carries a great deal of symbolic weight in the book. In this story of innocents destroyed by evil, the "mockingbird" comes to represent the idea of innocence. Throughout the book, a number of characters (Scout, Tom Robinson, Boo Radley, Mr. Raymond) can be identified as mockingbirds--innocents who have been injured by evil.

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