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

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“You run like a girl!” Everybody’s heard that phrase- or to put it otherwise, insult. Why is that considered an insult though? Since when is doing something like a girl a bad thing? Especially when you are a girl. In the book To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, Scout deals with prejudice like that based on her gender on a near constant basis. She faces prejudice at age six. This prejudice comes in different forms, but each form affects Scout and affects how she views being a woman. Scout deals with prejudice through demeaning comments from people close to her, seeing the common gender roles of women, and observing ways in which women were treated as lesser than men. The effects of this prejudice are seen through the ways that Scout constantly …show more content…
She sees the gender roles that women were forced into, and it changes how she thinks. She wasn’t born hating the fact that she’s a girl it’s something she learned. She saw the stereotypes about how a girl is supposed to act and it changed how she felt about being a girl. She liked things that were seen as unacceptable for girls in the 1930’s. Girls couldn’t get dirty, or play with boys, or be loud, or swear, and she enjoyed doing all of those things. At one point she said, “Ladies bathed before noon, after their three-o’clock naps, and by nightfall were like soft teacakes with frostings of sweat and sweet talcum” (Lee 5). These were the roles women were expected to conform to, and Scout wanted no part of it. She thought that being born a girl meant that she had to be delicate and- in her eyes- boring. She didn’t want to be like that, and it caused her quite a bit of aversion toward being a girl. That infuriated people, because girls weren’t supposed to act like boys, so they tried to force Scout to wear dresses and be polite when that wasn’t who she was. This prejudice made her feel out of place, because it caused people to try to make her conform to a stereotype that she didn’t want to be part …show more content…
Being called a girl is an insult, women were expected to be delicate, timid, and quiet at all times, and they were viewed as inferior to men. Sadly, this prejudice got to Scout. How could it not? At her most impressionable age, she was taught that her gender was inferior, that women were below men. That doesn’t instil much pride young girls about being a woman. That’s why Scout fought it so hard, she didn’t want to be a lady, she just wanted to be herself, but she couldn’t. At that time it wasn’t acceptable. So society forced her to change. She had to become “a lady” even though she didn’t want to. Think of it from her point of view. How would it feel to have to alter your personality all the time just because people had a prejudice about your gender? A preconceived notion about how you were supposed to act, think, and dress, all because of something that you couldn’t change: your

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