To Kill A Mockingbird Ap Language Analysis

1412 Words 6 Pages
Vanessa Yu
Mrs. DiMaggio
AP Language

In the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, the author Harper Lee tells a powerful story through the narrative of a young girl. The author conveys that possessing the qualities of morality, sympathy and courage, a person can overcome a prejudiced and racist society and find the good in the most unlikely and unexpected people. The author establishes her purpose using characterization and pathos. To Kill a Mockingbird is set in Maycomb County, a small town in southern Alabama. Taking place in the early 1930s, the townspeople experience the Great Depression and racial segregation. During these times of trouble, severe poverty, low wages, and lack of resources take great play. The town itself did not have much
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The protagonist, Scout Finch, is extremely observant and intelligent beyond her age of six. She hears wild rumors and gossip about her neighbor Boo Radley and learns why everyone categorizes him as a monster. Scout develops the same feelings for Boo Radley and fears the possibility of encountering him. Scout says, “He can get out at night when we’re all asleep...” Her presumptions on who Boo Radley show that she is quick to judge and partial like the rest of her neighbors. It is not until a couple years later that Scout discovers who Boo Radley really is. Through this discovery, she herself discovers that the so-called enemies of her town can be the ones with the kindest souls. Through her father’s wisdom, Scout has a newfound maturity and awareness. Scout sleepily says to her father, “‘An’ they chased him ‘n’ never could catch him ‘cause they didn’t know what he looked like, an’ Atticus, when they finally saw him, why he hadn’t done any of those things...Atticus, he was real nice...’ ‘Most people are, Scout, when you finally see them.”’ This shows that through Scout’s change from being discriminatory through preconceived notions to empathic and caring, even a young girl living in a town where being prejudice is in the blood, can overcome that standard when she discovered her hero, Boo …show more content…
Children symbolize innocence that can be corrupted through the actions of an adult. Being raised in a racist and segregated town, most children develop hatred towards black people. However, it is up to them to choose to either feel that aggression or live above it. After watching a white lawyer condemn a black man in public, Dill says to Scout, “‘The way that man called him ‘boy’ all the time an’ sneered at him, an’ looked around the jury every time he answered-’ ‘Well, Dill, after all he’s just a Negro.’ ‘I don’t care one speck. It ain’t right, somehow it ain’t right to do ‘em that way. Hasn’t anybody got any business talkin’ like that-it just makes me sick.”’ The author uses pathos in this example to have the reader relate to the frustration Dill is encompassing after seeing a black man being disrespected. Although Dill understands that the lawyer was being racist like many others in his society, he also knows that no man should be treated with the disrespect the black man faced, regardless of color. Dill’s anger and sadness shows that he sympathizes the black man as if it were himself being debased. Dill’s outburst gives way in providing hope to change in his racist society.While Dill realizes the evils a white man can possess, Atticus has encountered many of those type of men and chooses to teach his children a lesson.

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