Socioeconomic Prejudice In To Kill A Mockingbird By Harper Lee

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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is a novel based off the life of Harper Lee. The story takes place is Maycomb, Alabama, and is told through the viewpoint of Scout, a six year old girl at the beginning of the story. The events in the story take place over a period of three years. Scout and her older brother, Jem, encounter a lot of prejudice in their hometown. Racial prejudice, socioeconomic prejudice, and gender prejudice all exist in Maycomb.
Racial prejudice is a negative attitude towards a group of people based on race, not direct knowledge or experience. To many people in Maycomb county, race was important. No matter how awful a white person was, they were still better than a black person, and to have a relationship with someone of
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There are many examples of socioeconomic prejudice in Maycomb. The first example is when Miss Caroline Fisher is introduced, “The class murmured apprehensively, would she prove to harbor her share of the peculiarities indigenous to that region”(16). This is an example of socioeconomic prejudice because the class judged Miss Caroline, not on her teaching style, but rather on where she was raised. The class has already formed an opinion on her based on what they knew, true or not, about her hometown. When Walter Cunningham goes to the Finch’s house for dinner, Scout shows socioeconomic prejudice. Walter pours syrup onto his vegetables and meat and Scout asks “what the sam hill he was doing”(24). Calpurnia pulls Scout into the kitchen and begins to scold her when Scout replies, “He ain’t company, Cal, he’s just a Cunningham.(24)” Scout is showing prejudice when she asks what Walter is doing when he pours syrup all over his food. She doesn’t realize that Walter’s family may not be able to afford syrup, therefore when he can have syrup he might eat it with whatever he is having. Even if his family can afford syrup, Scout would still be showing socioeconomic prejudice, because it may just be what he eats with his food, similar to how some people eat ketchup or ranch with everything. Another example of socioeconomic prejudice in Maycomb is the case of Dolphus Raymond. The town treats him like trash because of how he chooses to live. They believe the worst things they hear about him, simply because he doesn’t behave like the rest of the white people. On page 226 Jem says, “There’s four kinds of folks in the world. There’s the ordinary kind like us and the neighbors, there’s the kind like the Cunninghams out in the woods, the kind like the Ewells down at the dump, and the Negroes.” He then goes on to explain that “our kind of folks don’t like the Cunninghams, the

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