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The Magnitude of Prejudice in Maycomb, Alabama

By giuseppe93 Jan 04, 2011 646 Words
The Magnitude of Prejudice in Maycomb, Alabama

By: Joseph Carpino

Course: ENG 2D1-02
Teacher: Mrs. Wyles
Date: Thursday December 2, 2008

To Kill A Mockingbird Essay

On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered a speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. Martin Luther King said “I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; that one day right down in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.” For many years prejudice was a large problem in Alabama. A novel that emphasizes the magnitude of this problem is entitled “To Kill A Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. Three examples from the novel that show the extent of prejudice in Maycomb, Alabama are the jury convicting Tom Robinson, everyone in the community rejecting Mr. Raymond and when Mr. Ewell approached Atticus the day after the trial. In the novel “To Kill A Mockingbird”, prejudice has a massive impact on many people throughout Maycomb, Alabama.

The first critical example that is demonstrated in the novel is how the jury was convicting Tom Robinson. Evidence of this is when Reverend Sykes tells Jem and Scout “I ain’t ever seen any jury decide in favour of a coloured man over a with man.” (Lee 281). This shows how the jury was prejudice because they convicted Tom Robinson as guilty seeing that he was a black man. This is prejudice because the jury decided in favour of Mayella given that she was white instead of support of what was right, which was that Tom Robinson was innocent. This is the first very important example that shows the jury was prejudice when they convicted Tom Robinson.

The second vital example that is demonstrated in the novel is how everyone in Maycomb rejects Mr. Raymond because he has a black wife, interracial children and everyone thinks that he is drunk. Evidence of this is when Scout says “Somehow, I didn’t think Atticus would like it if we became friendly with Mr. Raymond and I knew Aunt Alexandra wouldn’t.” (Lee 267). This shows how everyone in Maycomb are prejudice by rejecting Mr. Raymond because their reasons for doing this are racist. You shouldn’t dislike someone just because they are married to a black person or has interracial children for the reason that it is wrong. This is the second important example that shows how many people in Maycomb are prejudiced towards Mr. Raymond.

The final decisive example that is demonstrated in the novel is when Mr. Ewell approached Atticus the day after the trial. Mr. Ewell threatened Atticus and spat on his face. Evidence of this is when Miss Stephanie said, “Atticus was leaving the post office when Mr. Ewell approached him, cursed him, spat on him and threatened to kill him.” (Lee 291). This shows how Mr. Ewell was prejudice about Atticus defending Tom Robinson just because he is black. This is prejudice because Atticus was just defending Tom Robinon given that it was his job, not because of his race. This is the third and final key example that shows how Mr. Ewell was prejudice about Atticus defending Tom Robinson at the trial.

Throughout this novel prejudice has a giant impact on many people in Maycomb. Examples that show this are the jury convicting Tom Robinson, everyone rejecting Mr. Raymond and when Mr. Ewell approached Atticus the day after the trial. Even today people are prejudice, but the good thing is that the number of people who are prejudice is decreasing. As a result of this the world will be more peaceful and safe.

By: Joseph Carpino

Bibliography:
http://www.sparknotes.com/lit/mocking/
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/To_Kill_a_Mockingbird

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