To Kill a Mockingbird Response to Literature

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Simran Gaglani
English honors
Period 1, Mrs. Grexton
November 18 2011

There are many significant symbols used to represent the different themes in To Kill a Mockingbird. Throughout the book Harper Lee transmits a message to the reader using examples and symbols to get her point across. Some of these symbols include the dresses, Tim Johnson, and dependencies.

The symbol that best represents the theme of growing up would be clothing. Throughout the book, clothing has been more than just a choice of style; it had been a sign of maturity. Another instance would be when Miss Maudie asks Scout, “‘Where are your britches today?’” Scout answers back, “Under my dress.” (Lee 309) This shows that Scout has finally learned to accept the inevitable and allow herself into becoming maturely feminine by wearing her breeches under a flowing dress; a sign of growth. “You’re also growing out of your pants a little.” (Lee 105) This quote by uncle Jack shows the physical change that is altering Scout over time. When Alexandra told Scout, “‘It won’t be many years, Jean louis, before you become interested in clothes and boys.’” She thought to herself, “…ill never be interested in clothes…” (Lee 107) This example points out where Scout started before her journey into a lady. But none the less in all of these examples, clothes have been the symbol of growth both physical and mental.

Just like clothes, Tim Johnson is a perfect symbol to reference racism and prejudice. The fatality of racism is both deadly and contagious, almost like a disease. ‘”Don’t go near him, he’s just as dangerous dead as alive.”’ (Lee 128) This example portrays the fact that racism and Tim Johnson are very alike. Just like rabies, racism can be deadly while existing and even when its dead because one touch is all it takes to infect your mind with hate and prejudice. Its contagious, just like rabies. ‘”Take him Mr. Finch.” (Lee 126) This example references to how Atticus had been chosen to take down the...
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