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Harper Lee once said, “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 corncobs, they don't do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That's why it's a sin to kill a mockingbird.”

This quote sets the tone of the book. To Kill a Mockingbird. It is a book about prejudice and injustice and how man’s ignorance can lead to both. While the landscape has changed somewhat since the 1930’s setting of the novel, the truths it teaches have not.

The Popularity of To Kill a Mockingbird and The Civil Rights Movement

The popularity of the novel cannot be denied. The story itself is a remarkable story worth telling. But why did it strike such a chord with the American public immediately upon its release?

To Kill a Mockingbird was released on July 11, 1960. Why is this a notable date? The Civil Rights Movement for African Americans in the US peaked during the early to mid-1960’s. This coincided with the time the novel was at the height of it’s popularity.

The novel, in a sense, was a voice for the injustice that was (and still is in many places) occurring. This is one large reason the novel has the staying power that it does and still serves as a reminder of what racial ignorance can create.

For a complete review of To Kill a Mockingbird, read the article "Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird Review."

The Importance of Moral Education

To Kill a Mockingbird starts out with the innocence of a young child, Scout Finch. Each page of the novel leads Scout into a deeper level of moral conscience. By the end of the book, Scout realizes that someone she does not understand, her neighbor Boo Radley, is a person of compassion and worthy of love.

When and how should a parent teach this type of moral education to a child? While parents want to protect their children from the world’s evils, some exposure, limited at best, is necessary to develop an adult with a strong character.

The quest to...
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