Discrimination In To Kill A Mockingbird Essay

1016 Words 5 Pages
Discriminate- make an unjust or prejudicial distinction in the treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, sex, or age.
To Kill a Mockingbird takes place in Maycomb County, Alabama during the Great Depression. The story follows Scout, the tomboy daughter of lawyer Atticus Finch who is given the task to defend Tom Robinson, a black man accused of rape. During the time the story takes place, there were many racist and prejudice impressions, primarily about black people. Harper Lee uses the topic of racism/prejudice to demonstrate the idea that characters in Maycomb society faced discrimination based on their race, class and gender as shown through Scout, Atticus and the Robinson Family.
In the novel
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In To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus was given the task to defend Tom Robinson, a black man, in court. Because of the racially biased thoughts surrounding black people, (being lower than white people, being hungry for white women, etc) Atticus was discriminated. For example, his nephew Francis was arguing against Scout ‘Francis said “But now he’s [Atticus] turned out a nigger lover we’ll never be able to walk the streets of Maycomb agin. He’s ruinin’ the family, that’s what he’s doin’.”’(Lee 110) Atticus became a victim of racism. Because Atticus was defending a black man, his own family discriminated him, saying he tarnished their family name, the reason being that, although Atticus was not black, he was a social taboo. He associated himself with a black person which was a horrible thing to do during the time, because of racist and prejudice assumptions about black people. This is further evident when Jem and Mrs. Dubose had a conflict between them, as Scout describes ’Jem said softly “She [Mrs. Dubose] said you [Atticus] lawed for niggers and trash.”’ (Lee 138) Atticus was again being discriminated because of his work with Tom Robinson. In addition to this, he is said he worked with trash, which is a prejudice statement, implying that Atticus was and defended scum. Because of the use of the slang term (n-word) and all the prejudice and racist thoughts surrounding that, it is used to treat and isolate Atticus in a negative

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