TKAM Chapters 17-21-The Trial
1.Why is Bob Ewell so repulsive? How does Lee ensure our dislike? * Lee describes him as a ‘little bantam cock of a man’- bad view of him * Says that he ‘strutted to the stand’- cockiness when his daughter is at court for being raped * Said the ‘back of his neck reddening at the sound his name’- referring to him as a redneck (ill-educated person) * She describes disgusting way in which his family had to live ‘lived behind town in a garbage dump’ and ‘varmints had a lean time of it’ * Portrays him in a negative light, he doesn’t care for his children ‘always several dirty faced ones at the window’ * Language he uses is not appropriate for court ‘that’s m’name cap’n’, ‘I seen that black nigger yonder ruttin’ on my Mayella!’ 2. In what ways does emotion rather than reason win in the courtroom? * People stick to their emotions about the prejudice of blacks and the superiority of whites rather than seeing the truth in the court even when it is pulled back layer by layer * Mayella’s tears make people feel sorry for her ‘she got enough sense to make the judge feel sorry for her’
3.Why do we feel sympathy for Mayella?
* She was first described as ‘fragile –looking’ but then it shows she was used to ‘labour’ * Lee also uses the red geraniums as a symbol Mayella is different to her family’s stereotype ‘one corner of the yard bewildered Maycomb…jars holding brilliant red geraniums, cared for…tenderly’ * She begins to cry as she is first put on trial and is made to seem scared of Atticus, she is portrayed as quite pathetic * She is very nervous ‘she had twisted her handkerchief into a sweaty rope; when she opened it to wipe her face it was a mass of creases from her hot hands’ * She takes great offence when Atticus calls her ‘Miss’ and ‘Ma’am’, he believes he is mocking her and Lee makes clear to us she has never been shown routine courtesy in her life, which is why she flares up with...
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