To Kill a Mockingbird

Topics: Great Depression, 1930s, Education Pages: 2 (738 words) Published: December 17, 2012
Education in the 1930s: To Kill a Mockingbird

Long before the 1930s public schools were a symbol of American democracy. It was a place where hard work and achievement were rewarded, where brilliance was dug up from basic talent, a necessary starting point on the road to success ("The 1930s: Education: Overview."). Education had an important role throughout the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird. Harper Lee described education through her story and how it was a difficult thing to keep necessary. Along with the 1930s The Great Depression and segregation tagged along as well allowing teachers to go unpaid fully and schools to shut down. Conflicts over schools and education have often been the main struggle between the black and white communities.

Knowledge, literacy, and formal education have always been viewed as a necessary thing in the African-American struggle for freedom and equality. By the 1930s money was at its very low limit because of the depression. People did what they could to make their lives happy. This made education very important if they wanted to live a decent life and not poorly. Scout and Jem as young children attended school where in order to buy a carton of milk you needed a quarter. They were lucky enough to have a well-educated father as a lawyer that provided that for them. Other children weren’t as lucky with their larger and poorer families. Basically the more educated you were in the 1930's the more opportunities of higher waged job that provided a decent amount of money. Some people didn’t necessarily have to have a college degree to have a good job, for example Atticus did just fine as a single father/ lawyer and no college degree.

During the Great Depression years not only did people suffer from lack of jobs, money, homes, and food, but the education of children suffered also. Children dropped out of school to sell newspapers and shine shoes. Students were also forced to wear worn out, mended clothes...
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