The Powerless In Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird

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A mockingbird is a powerless, innocent creatures who does nothing but sing its heart out. Killing one or even hurting one would be like hurting a helpless baby. Harper Lee uses the mockingbird as a symbol which signifies that everything is good and harmless in her novel To Kill a Mockingbird. This book takes place in Maycomb, a small racist town. The mockingbird is first mentioned when Atticus tells his kids how it is sinful to kill a mockingbird. Lee intelligently demonstrates innocence in characters such as Tom Robinson, Jem and Scout and also Arthur Radley. In using the mockingbird she creates a clever symbol that foreshadows when something is going to happen. And then she brings it one step further and involves the mockingbird in other …show more content…
This is a crime he has not committed and despite the fact that it is not proven and that it is clear that he is innocent, he finds himself, like a mockingbird, helpless when he is convicted. “He likened Tom 's death to the senseless slaughter of songbirds” (Lee 241). Once Tom is convicted and sentenced to death he decides there is no hope. So he tries to escape knowing full well that his death is inevitable. The guards then shoot him seventeen times. If a man who had a gun saw a mockingbird in the forest and wanted to kill it, it would be easy to do because a mockingbird is defenceless, and could only try o flee. One should never be killed because there is no reason to kill it. The same thing occurs with Tom, when Mayella (a young woman who claims she has been raped by Tom) opens her mouth and screams. He knew he was a dead man. Just because he was a black man, the word of Mayella, an unreliable woman, was trusted over his. He found himself confined and helpless with no options similar to how a mockingbird would feel if it were going to be shot at by a hunter. Tom only helps the community. For example he always stops and helps Mayella with anything she needs because he feels like there is a lack of a father figure in her life. This admirable quality of his can also be compared to how a mockingbird sings its heart out just for the pleasure of others. The author asks whether killing a mockingbird who only sings or killing a man who only does positive things for the city is the correct thing to do? This is what Lee tries to get you as a reader to think about as you read her story. She doesn’t just want you to read the story and then move on, she wants you to learn about how what happens to Tom Robinson is a mistake. Tom should not have been killed. No mockingbirds were shot

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