Theme Of Perception In To Kill A Mockingbird

1185 Words 5 Pages
Books teach us how to see things through other point of views. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee is labeled one of the most influential novels of all time. Perception is a thing a person can alter continuously throughout their lives. In the novel To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee developed the theme of situation changed perception using the literary elements of characterization and conflicts.
Harper Lee constructed her theme of situation molding perception through the literary device of characterization. A Specific example of this is seen in the dynamic characterization of Boo Radley. Boo Radley or simply Boo, was someone who “dined on raw squirrels and any cats he could catch,” (Lee,7) and poisoned nuts in the school yard. This makes him
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Arthur,” (Lee, 147). This shows Scout trusts Boo Radley or rather Mr. Arthur with her brother, whom she loves very much. This scene uses the characterization of Boo Radley changing in Scouts perception when Boo changes from a savage, killer to a man she trusts with her brother and latter even walking home alone with him. This scene also shows that if the situation of Bob Ewell endangering the children did not happen then Scouts perception might not have changed. It is because of this situation that Boo had to save the children and it is then that Scout realizes her perception of Boo was all wrong. Harper Lee could have chosen this scene to show how malleable someone’s perception is. This example shows that perception is very flexible and able to change when presented with new situations. Furthermore Lee uses Mrs. Debose to show the theme when at first she often insults the children for anything, but fine behavior. She often yells things to Scout such as, “Don’t you say hey to me, you ugly girl,”(Lee,54). Yet when the children are forced to read to her until her anticipated death. Her perspective had seen to change of the children after this time. This can be seen when she leaves Jem a perfect flower and a book. …show more content…
Firstly she uses Scouts external conflict against Cecil Jacobs. She wants to defend her father from his disgusting disputes, but Atticus simply tells Scout “Just hold you head high, and keep those fists down,” (Lee, 41). So in the school yard the next day when he calls her filthy names she merely walked away. “Somehow, if I fought Cecil I would let Atticus down,” (Lee 41). This represents that if she never had an instigation with Cecil than she may have never talked to Atticus about her emotions. If the situation of talking to Atticus never occurred then Scout’s perception would have never changed and this theme would therefore not be accurate. This shows how her conflict against Cecil Jacobs changed her perception on fighting. In Addition Scout has another external conflict against Jem when he wouldn’t allow her to play with him. It all changed one day when Jem said “It’s time you started bein’ a girl and start acting right,” (Lee, 61). After this conflict, Scout agrees to do anything for Jem and even ends up rolling into the petrifying Radley abode on a tire. After this Jem is very nice and pleased with her actions. Lee uses conflict to show how they cause situations which result in change of Jem’s perception. Had Scout not had a conflict with Jem she would have never done some as daunting as riding into the yard of the rodent reaping Radley. This situation then allows Jem to rethink his

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