The Role Of Society In To Kill A Mockingbird By Harper Lee

Superior Essays
Have you ever judged, criticized, or labeled a person before? While it may have accidentally or innocent childish fun, we have all spoken about someone and given them a label. Society criticizes people all the time without realizing it, and places them into a certain category. In the 1930’s people, also labeled others by their family reputation, skin color, and mentality. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee explains that society plays an important role in people 's lives and dictates how a person is supposed to look and act. In the novel, which takes place in the 1930’s in a small town called Maycomb, Scout Finch grows up in a time period where individuality was shamed on. Scout and her brother, Jem, listen to their stories about the terrifying …show more content…
Many people know the Radley’s, and they know that they are rarely involved with the community, but many suspect it has to do with Arthur, also known as Boo. The Finch children have taken upon themselves to investigate what Boo is up to in his house. Many of their neighbors are afraid of him and think he is crazy and should not come outside since “ Boo drove [scissors into] his parent’s leg” (Lee 13). People believe that he should have gone to an asylum, but Mrs. Radley begged the authorities to not allow it and promised that he will not cause harm anymore by staying locked indoors. Throughout the story, the children are trying to figure out the real reason why Boo stays indoors, but as the novel progresses they realize that there are other more important issues in society. Towards the end of the novel, Scout discovers that Boo is not the person that people illustrate him to be and he is actually a Mockingbird. One of the lessons Atticus would teach Scout is to not judge a person based on other people 's opinions instead he explained, “You never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them” (374). When Scout is standing on the Radley porch she can imagine how it would have been “walking” in Boo’s shoes and life. Boo was labeled a lunatic by his neighbors like an African American was labeled guilty because …show more content…
Tom was an obedient, hard worker for his boss and had a family that he adored. However, Tom’s whole life changed in an instant when Mayella Ewell accused him of being a rapist and the Ewell family testified against him. Atticus was given the case to defend Tom, but when Tom was found guilty Miss Maudie told Scout that “Atticus had used every tool available to free men to save Tom Robinson, but in the secret courts of men’s hearts Atticus had no case. Tom was dead the minute Mayella Ewell opened her mouth and screamed” (323). Atticus did everything he could to make the people of Maycomb open their eyes and realize that Tom is not guilty of any crime, but unfortunately society at that time in America was not fair. The council was never going to let Tom free, because it was a white man’s word against an African American, so even if the evidence was clearly pointing to Tom being innocent he would still have to pay for it. However, Mrs Maudie was the only one that understood what was occurring, and tried to let the other ladies understand at Aunt Alexandra’s tea meeting. She sided with Atticus that society is unfair and even though “ a handful of people in [Maycomb say] that fair play [is] not marked White Only; the handful of people who say a fair trial is for everybody not just us”, a humble person can remember that no matter a

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