To Kill a Mockingbird Critique

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The Strength of Theme
Today, most everyone in the United States is free of racial discrimination, however this was not always the case. Ellen Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, reminds the reader of a time in the 1930’s when prejudice existed. This classic tells a story from the perspective of a six year-old girl, Jean “Scout” Louis Finch, who lives in Maycomb, Alabama. She is a rugged and headstrong girl, who is the daughter of a prominent lawyer, Atticus, and her deceased mother. This story follows the life of Scout and her bother, Jem, as they witness and combat the prejudice and hatred in their community, causing a coming of age experience for both Scout and her brother. In the novel, Harper Lee influences these characters based upon her own experiences growing up, which include her lawyer father’s participation in the interracial rape case, the Scottsboro Trial. It is a result of that experience that determined her plot for writing the novel. Likewise, Harper Lee effectively uses her mastery of literary elements in the novel. The strongest literary elements found in the novel are the presented themes, which remind the reader of their humanity. These themes include morality, youth and coming of age, and justice.             The most prompting theme in To Kill a Mockingbird is morality. Atticus and his efforts to maintain high ethical standards support this theme’s evidence. His profound efforts speak to his character, and his character speaks profoundly despite the efforts of public duress and humiliation. In addition to public duress, Atticus faced domestic concern: “If you shouldn’t be defendin’ him, then why are you doin’ it? “For a number of reasons,” said Atticus. “The main one is, if I didn’t I couldn’t hold my head up in this town, I couldn’t represent this county in the legislature, I couldn’t even tell you or Jem not to do something again.” […] “Atticus, are we going to win it?”

“No, honey.”
“Then why-”...
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