Symbolism In To Kill A Mockingbird By Harper Lee

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In every piece of writing, symbolism is used to provide a deeper meaning beyond what the text actually says. The way you interpret the meaning of a text can be way off if you miss the play on symbols that the writer has done. Symbolism also enhances the story on a whole other level than you would have originally thought. Deciphering the hidden meanings of symbols makes every piece of literature that much greater. In To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee did a great job with symbolism. Everything she writes in the story has a hidden meaning behind it. Everyone and thing in the story has an underlying message and meaning. From the Radley Place, the tree, Tom Robinson, and even the little roly poly all have an important significance on what they mean. …show more content…
Mockingbirds are innocent, harmless creatures that do nothing but sing us songs. In the story it is made known that killing a mockingbird would be wrong. “I’d rather you shoot at tin cans in the backyard, but I know you’ll go after birds. Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird” (103). In the story the mockingbird represents Tom Robinson. Tom was a Negro man whose act of kindness backfired and got him killed. He was only trying to help Mayella Ewell, because he felt sorry for her. Just like a mockingbird, Tom was innocent. Unfortunately, being like that mockingbird got him killed. Lee uses the mockingbird to show that there is an appropriate time to kill, and times where it’s a sin to do it. Boo Radley is also like a mockingbird. Even though the whole town thinks he’s a crazed killer, he’s simply a kind gentle man who is just misunderstood. He gave gifts to the kids, placed a blanket around scout to keep her from getting cold, and also saves both Jem and Scouts lives. Just like a mockingbird he’s …show more content…
He embodies wisdom, fatherhood, and voice of reason. His intelligence and model behavior is why he’s well respected in the town of Maycomb. He wants everything to be equal and fair, even when it came to his kids, “When Jem an’ I fuss Atticus doesn’t ever just listen to Jem’s side of it, he hears mine too” (97). Along with fairness Atticus is very level headed. Even though the whole town and all his friends turned their backs on Atticus he remained humbled and didn’t let it stop him from caring for his friends. “This time we aren’t fighting the Yankees, we’re fighting our friends. But remember this, no matter how bitter things get, they’re still our friends and this is still our home” (87). Overall justice is what Atticus stands for. He believes in doing the right thing and being able to lead by example for his kids. He knows that everyone thinks that he shouldn’t defend Tom but his reasoning for doing so is, “The main one is, if I didn’t I couldn’t hold my head up in town, I couldn’t represent this country in the legislature, I couldn’t even tell you or Jem to do something again”

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