How Is to Kill a Mockingbird a Classic Text

Topics: Racism, African American, Race and Ethnicity Pages: 3 (975 words) Published: April 1, 2013
A classic novel is one which relates to and questions aspects central to our lives, and can be related to for generations to come. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, is one of the most common examples of this, as it conveys one of the most important ideas of our era, racism. The racial prejudice present at the time the novel was based, all of which can still be seen in many places today over 50 years on, is mostly what makes this a classic novel. Lee uses the themes of racial prejudice, the Mockingbird, the role of family and elders in shaping our values and the importance of creating a caring and racism free society, to convey her ideas. Along with the use of narrative techniques and characters in the novel, she is able to demonstrate exactly what she desired. Racial prejudice is an ongoing issue in many societies, and has been a very persuasive element since. In To Kill a Mockingbird, Lee uses the constant repetition of the derogatory phrase ‘nigger lover’ as a way of demonstrating the hatred shown towards anyone who supported the African Americans. With this, we are able to understand exactly how prejudice and corrupted racist thoughts could be. However, there are many more racially prejudice ideas presented in the ‘Tom Robinson Case’ of the novel. Tom Robinson is an African American who was convicted by Mr Ewell for raping his daughter. Lee makes it quite obvious in the novel that Tom Robinson was actually innocent and it was Mr Ewell who raped his daughter. Yet, one of the most respected Negros (Tom Robinson) is denied innocence over the most despised white man of Maycomb County (Mr Ewell). This major comparison is the most apparent technique Lee uses to totally show how racially prejudice people could be. To further that, Tom Robinson is murdered despite his innocence. As a result, a sorrowful feeling is created in the reader, making us question “Is this really how racism is?”. As Miss Maudie explains, “Mockingbirds don't do one thing but make music for...
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