To Kill a Mockingbird

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To Kill a Mockingbird is a novel set in the Southern United States during the 1930’s. Although also present in the Northern United States at that time , racial discrimination and prejudice against black people was much more prevalent in the South , and was not against the law. Black people were originally taken by force from Africa to America to work as slaves. As slaves they were not entitled to the same education and laws as their white masters and often endured extreme brutality and hardships because of their so called inferior status. One such example of this brutality was a practice at that time , known as lynching. Lynching is a form of mob justice in which the victims were hanged or burned. Sometimes many innocent black people suspected of a crime were lynched without a trial or protection from the law and other authorities. This cruel practice was just one way in which whites enforced supremacy over blacks. The words: ‘Cry about the simple hell people give other people – without even thinking’ go right to the heart of this book. This statement is made by Mr Dolphus Raymond , the town ‘drunk’ to Dill in chapter 20 of the book. Mr Dolphus himself knows exactly about the ‘hell people give other people- without even thinking’. He is a white man, married to a black woman and because of this he has a bad reputation in Maycomb. He is labelled as a drunk , but is actually not one. He puts on this ‘act’ simply to protect himself from the harsh criticism he would otherwise have to face because of his lifestyle. This theme of good people being wrongly judged by some small minded people, is constantly prevalent throughout the book. This theme of being quick to judge others and treating them badly because of it, first surfaces with childrens fascination and fear of Boo Radley. Because no one really ever saw him , the people of Maycomb invented all sorts of weird stories about him. Often , when something- or someone, in this case- is unknown or ‘different’ from us we...
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