The Theme of Discrimination: To Kill A Mockingbird

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In To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee takes readers to the roots of human behaviour, to innocence and experience, kindness and cruelty, love and hatred, and the struggle between blacks and whites. The novel explores several racial issues to do with this struggle between blacks and whites, one of the main being the racial issue of segregation, the discriminating separation between these two races. In much of the country of the United States, black people, “negroes”, were pretty much forbidden to share the same spaces as whites. This included public transport, recreational areas, and schools. Having separate schools for African Americans branded their whole race with the humiliation of degradation and inferiority. Any African American child attempting to enrol in a segregated white school was denied. In Topeka there were around eighteen neighbourhood schools for white children, and yet African American children only had access to four of those eighteen schools. In Harper Lee’s novel, the majority of the black community is illiterate because there are no schools for them in Maycomb County. Their only way of learning is from their parents, or another elder. For example, Mrs Buford taught Calpurnia, and Calpurnia taught her son. Including Cal and her son, Zeebo, only four African Americans in the church can read. In Topeka, of the United States, laws to oppose segregation were starting to be introduced. This was a significant turning point in the development of the country. The Brown V Board of Education of Topeka took it upon themselves to dismantle the legal basis for racial segregation in schools and other facilities. This was laying the foundation for shaping future national and international policies regarding human rights. However not everyone agreed with this. Many Whites protested against desegregation and declared that violence was threatening if it occurred in schools and that they should keep peace by turning the black students away. So desegregation began...
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