This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Trial In To Kill A Mocking Bird

1346 words - 5 pages

To Kill a Mocking Bird - How important is the trial in dealing with the theme of Prejudice.

Maycomb is a town riddled with prejudices and stereotypes and the trial of Tom Robinson shows and makes clear those prejudices to us.

Firstly, during the trial, Jem, Scout and Dill sit upon the balcony with the blacks. This is significant because in the court there is a great sense of segregation and
we can see the children's innocence because they don't have the same view of the
blacks as the rest of the community - they don't have any prejudices at all.

On the other hand, Bob Ewell is a prime example of 'White Trash'. He has a seething hatred for the Negroes and even though he is neither morally better nor more respectable than Tom Robinson, he is seen by the community as superior simply because he is a white man and, in their eyes, whites are better than blacks.

When Scout says that the only thing that makes Bob Ewell better than Tom Robinson is the fact that if his skin were rubbed he would be a white man beneath, it shows that a black man doesn't have a chance against a white man's word.

Mayella, however, even though she is the daughter of Bob Ewell, doesn't adopt the same prejudices as her father and even though she lives around the town dump, she still makes an effort to better herself and make herself more civilised. She feels ashamed, to some extent, at the values of her father and her standard of living, and when she is caught trying to make moves on Tom Robinson, her father makes her feel ashamed of herself.

Mayella represents a violated white female and a victim of poverty and narrow-mindedness. She can't really make advances in her life due to her father's lazy and drunken demeanour. I deduce that Bob is abusive towards her and as a result, her
self-esteem must be very low and she mustn't be able to maintain a high level of self
respect when her father is constantly knocking it down. She feels imprisoned like Boo
Radley and her father puts to an end all of her attempts to socialise.

When she seduces Tom Robinson and her father finds out, he makes her feel so ashamed that she helps Bob, her father, to get away with his perjury. The likelihood that the jury would acquit Tom is almost imaginary. The reason for Mayella's outburst during Atticus' cross-examination, is that she wishes to put an end to the audience's and jury's conclusions of what really happened, by pointing out to them that Tom Robinson is a black man, and that black men are not to be trusted around white women. She comes out with this outburst, also, because there are evident cracks in her story which threaten to expose the truth. She feels that the prejudice of the community is a 'get out of jail free' card for her and in her opinion, this is more important than the life of an innocent, respectable black man, who has done nothing other than be kind and helpful to her in contrast with her father's neglect and abusive ways. In a way, she is inadvertently...

Find Another Essay On The Trial in To Kill a Mocking Bird

To Kill A Mocking Bird: Racisim In The South

795 words - 3 pages In many novels set within a particular time period, there is always a tendency for the theme to be based around the era itself. In To Kill A Mocking Bird there is a theme of effects of racism in the 1930's in the south. Although racism is one distinct theme, ignorance is another underlying theme. Harper Lee develops this theme by having two storylines going on at once and eventually linking in the end. Dill, and Jem and Scout Finch are three

To Kill A Mocking Bird Essay

356 words - 2 pages characters. In this case Tom Robinson and Boo Radley symbolises the mocking bird. Tom is convited of a crime he didn't commit, but Bob Ewell points the finger at him. Boo is locked up in his own room for thirty years and to put him in trial when he's not used to public attention would kill him. This is the quote Scout said " Well it'd sort of being like shootin' a mocking bird wouldn't it?" We are first introduced to the mocking bird image when Uncle

To Kill A Mocking Bird

633 words - 3 pages 2. “What is the significance of the title of the novel” “I’d rather you shoot at tin cans in the backyard, but I know you’ll go after the birds. Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mocking bird.” Atticus Finch recites these lines to his two children, Jem and Scout after he gives them air-rifles for Christmas. Scout is curious, as this is the first time that she has ever heard her father refer

To Kill a Mocking Bird

645 words - 3 pages 2. ?What is the significance of the title of the novel? ?I?d rather you shoot at tin cans in the backyard, but I know you?ll go after the birds. Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit ?em, but remember it?s a sin to kill a mocking bird.? Atticus Finch recites these lines to his two children, Jem and Scout after he gives them air-rifles for Christmas. Scout is curious, as this is the first time that she has ever heard her father refer to

To Kill A Mocking Bird

953 words - 4 pages lost the case shows the racism in its most bitter form. Atticus believes that Tom should be given a ? fair trial?, in which the colour of the defendant does not decide on ones fate. This was one thing that didn?t happen and was never going to happen. This reveals the reason why the novel portrays human nature as pessimistic. It is because of the bottled up fear within.Fear is a theme in To Kill A Mocking Bird that helps us see why human nature is

To Kill a Mocking Bird

814 words - 3 pages In chapter twenty-three of the book To Kill a Mocking Bird the author talks about racism and why people belief what they do. Most of this chapter is a conversation between Atticus, Jem and Scout about why Tom Robinson was found guilty and why he might be sent to the electric chair. Scout and Jem don?t understand how anyone could convict him when the prosecution?s evidence is foggy at best and clearly they can not prove that Tom raped Mayella

To Kill A Mocking Bird

1041 words - 5 pages To Kill a Mocking Bird In Harper Lee's rites-of-passage novel 'To Kill a Mocking Bird', the theme of prejudice and injustice is portrayed in many aspects of the narrative, and suggests that out-casts and misfits of society cannot escape the callous effects of discrimination in the conventional town of Maycomb. Through the protagonist's eyes Jean Louise Finch also known as Scout, we are shown the harsh and insensitive circumstances the victimized

To kill a mocking bird

1413 words - 6 pages In my to Kill A Mocking Bird book cover I have added the following themes and elements to my book cover: a tree with a knothole, roots of the tree, six geraniums, a snowman, fire, a mocking bird. On the book’s back cover i have added: the element of black and white, scales and a man with his fist up on top of the scales. A tree with a knothole and its roots The tree with the knothole is Boo Radley’s attempt to form a friendship with the children

To Kill a Mocking Bird

1146 words - 5 pages further reference to the fact that Atticus is an individual who fights for the underprivileged and disadvantaged. Atticus' lesson to his children "shoot all the blue jays you want, If you can hit em but remember it's a sin to kill a mocking bird". Atticus here is making reference to the unjust trial of Tom Robinson "likened Tom's death to the senseless slaughter of song birds", which is unfairly done because of. Tom was an innocent man, and like

To Kill a Mocking Bird - 839 words

839 words - 4 pages What is courage? Atticus finch has the best description “I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what”(Lee,149). In To Kill A Mocking Bird true courage can be shown by Mrs. Dubose, Jem, and Atticus By Fighting the fight they knew they could not win.The three parts in

to kill a mocking bird

839 words - 3 pages " To Kill A Mocking Bird " book may be Scout Finch or Atticus Finch are the major characters but I think Jem Finch is the major character here . Jem is Scouts elder brother . And Jem is Scout's primary source of knowledge and he takes responsibility for her in most instances . Here Jem grows as older , he finds it difficult to deal with the hypocrisy and cruelty of people , but Atticus another major character helps him work though some of that

Similar Essays

The Trial Of Tom Robinson In "To Kill A Mocking Bird"

1475 words - 6 pages shouted at Mayella, you god damn whore, Ill Kill you. I then just ran out of there. I asked if he had raped Mayella, he replied no sir, I asked if he had harmed her and he said no sir. That was the last of my questioning. Mr Gilmer now started to question Tom. He started saying stuff at Tom trying to break him down and trying to make him look like a liar in front of the jury, but Tom had an answer for all of his questions.That was the end of

Prejudice In To Kill A Mocking Bird

774 words - 3 pages the Scout and her brother. In my opinion, this is more injustice, because another attacker is not in trouble. Prejudice is a major theme in To Kill a Mocking Bird. The story is based on the prejudice town of Maycomb. The whole reason why the trial was going on was because of people views towards blacks in the south. Since

Bravery In To Kill A Mocking Bird

849 words - 4 pages , from many different people, despite age, gender, etc. And different kinds of bravery are what change the world in different kinds of ways. The first person in, To Kill a Mocking Bird that exhibits bravery in different kinds of ways is Atticus’s loyal son and Scouts respectable older brother; Jem. In the novel Jem shows many kinds of bravery, but his most notable one is Physical Bravery. ‘“Go home, I (Atticus) said.’ Jem shook his head. As

Foils In To Kill A Mocking Bird

2157 words - 9 pages shows the difference in how much they care about the children and how Miss Stephanie Crawford makes up rumours and lies. Miss Maudie only tells what she knows is true.) (All in all, sometimes contrasting characters may be hard to understand, but when you get down to it they are a vital part of the story and in the case of To Kill a Mocking bird it is evidently no different. In this book, Miss Maudie and Miss Stephanie are a crucial point in Jem