Read full document


Page 1 of 1
To Kill A Mockingbird
What ideas is Harper Lee trying to present and how does she do it

The novel, To Kill A Mockingbird, is a novel that explore human morality. There are many ideas and themes that Harper Lee incorporates into her novel and presents it to the readers through the use of various scenes and characters. The key issues that are brought up in To Kill A Mockingbird are the destruction of innocence, the idea of perspective and the well-known, racism. These three ideas form both the plot and structure of the novel, exposing its true meaning to readers.

The destruction of innocence is an issue evident throughout the whole novel and is what the title of the novel is based on. The metaphor of the ‘mockingbird’ is used in relation to this very issue. “Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird” is the quote of this issue and is an important one for the novel. ‘Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy’ is the quote that supports the idea that mockingbirds represent innocence and purity and becomes a metaphor for the human ‘mockingbirds’ in the novel. Several human mockingbirds are encountered in the novel, such as the two important characters in the novel; Tom Robinson and Boo Radley. Tom Robinson is the best example of the destruction of this innocence. He was doing a chore for Mayella Ewell and was convicted of a crime he did not even do when he was in fact innocent. He received the death sentenced and was shot dead as he escaped for freedom. “There’s a black boy dead for no reason” is said by Mr. Tate, further showing that even the authorities knew of Robinson’s innocence.

Lee also presents the idea of perspective and understanding between individuals. “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view-until you climb inside his skin and walk around in it” becomes the central quote for this specific idea. This hints that the...

Rate this document

What do you think about the quality of this document?

Share this document

Let your classmates know about this document and more at