I think Mayella is mostly powerful because of her race and here is how. There was quote on page nineteen of the DBQ that said “Now don’t you be so confident, Mr. Jem, I ain’t ever seen any jury decide in favor of a colored man over a white man…” This here showed us that not one single colored man ever beat a case against another man. And since Miss Mayella is a female, Tom is definitely going to have a hard time winning against her. There was another quote on page twenty-one that said, “...
She wanted to do to things with Tom and tempted him to do them. Tom fell into Mayella’s trap while trying to help her out. “She was white and she tempted a Negro. She did something that in our society is unspeakable: she kissed a black man. Not an old Uncle, but a strong Negro man.
power is the ability to have complete power over someone elses lives as well as your own. In the story “to kill a mockingbird”,tom robinson is convicted for a crime he diddnt commit- rape. The alleged victim is Mayella Ewell. Tom Robinson was blamed for this heinous crime for two main reasons; he was in the wrong place at the wrong time,and because he was black. Mayella ,a poor -class white woman who lives whith her dad and several siblings.with Mayellas father being a drunk;the Ewells have been known for their troublemaking.what makes Mayella have power over Tom Robinson?is it class?gender?race maybe?although
Mayella must have been crestfallen most of her life because she never had any friends and never had a social life. But Mayella “looked as if she tried to keep clean” this includes keeping herself clean and her belongings like her little section in the garden. (Doc A) Since her father spends all his paychecks on liquor and never takes care of his children and house Mayella must try and keep clean by herself. This is sad to see because Mayella is restricted by what she can do because of her father's irresponsible spending habits that keep them in a low class and abusive household. This is why Mayella's class makes her less powerful outside of court and in Maycomb’s
ower? I define power as the ability to do something, have the ability to influence others to do something. In a brief summary To Kill a Mockingbird author Lee Harper uses memorable characters to explore civil rights and racism in the segregated southern united states of the 1930’s. The story is told from through the eyes of Scout Finch, you learn about her father Atticus FInch who is an attorney who hopelessly strives to prove the innocence of a black man unjustly accused of rape; and about Boo Radley a mysterious neighbor who saves Scout and her brother Jem from being killed, because of her class and gender Mayella is powerless but, her race makes her powerful.
Everybody has two different sides to him or her- one that is seen by others and one that is buried in their personal lives, completely hidden from others. People tend to perceive themselves as how they are seen by other people, but can open up or be exposed when they are put in that position. In Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, both of Mayella’s sides are evident. On the outside, she can be dismissed as a lying cheat, as she lied while on the witness stand.
Mayella was powerless in gender because she was always abused. “Mayella was beaten savagely by someone who lead almost exclusively with his left” (Document B). Based on this quote it shows that Mayella’s father had beaten her sexual, verbally, and physically. Tom Robinson also was crippled in his left hand which shows her father beat her. During the trial Atticus questions Mayella about if she loves her father and she response “he tollable, except when he is drinking” (Document B).
Women were only looked at for cleaning, washing clothes, and making things for the house. When Tom had told the court that Mayella had reached up to him and tried to kiss him. People didn’t believe him because women were not suppose to be doing things like that. People were more against Tom because he ran away when Bob Ewell saw him. For this reason, Mayella Ewells had a lot of power for the race.
First, she had to make up a story about Tom Robinson because she had kissed a black man, which was frowned upon for a white woman to do. “She was white and she tempted a Negro. She did something that in our society in unspeakable: she kissed a black man”(272). Mayella is also used as an example when she convinces the jury to convict an innocent black man because of Southern Womanhood. “That n***** took advantage of me, an’ if you fine fancy gentlemen don’t wanna do nothin’ about it then you’re all yellow stinkin’ cowards, stinkin’ cowards, the lot of you”(251).
One would say she is not powerful because she is enclosed from the world, beaten by her father, and not very respected. For example, as Atticus asked Mayella to see if her father is good and tolerable to her, but she says “He does tollable, ‘cept when-”, ‘Except when he’s drinking?’ asked Atticus so gently that Mayella nodded. ”(Lee, Chapter 18) This would prove that Mayella has less power than usual when her father is drunk because, his gender as a male has the power over her and gets violent when drunk.
Mayella was not favored by the people in Maycomb. She was extremely poor and never spoke on any harassment she suffered from her father. Tom Robinson attempts to get the truth out in the open when he is giving his testimony, “She said what her papa do to her don’t count” (Doc B). Mayella doesn’t fully understand that her father is physically abusive towards her. To her it’s just love.
But she said he took advantage of her, and when she stood up she looked at him as if he were dirt beneath her feet.” Mayella’s loneliness and powerlessness drove her to have an affair with a black man, breaking a societal code. She is a victim of poverty because of the hatred and discrimination occurring in Maycomb. Although some might view Mayella Ewell as a victim, others might view her as a villain because she broke a societal code by attempting to have an affair with a Negro.