During the time of To Kill A Mockingbird, racism was a big problem that went unrealized. Many people did not realize how unjust it was. Constantly this book reminds us and shows that racism was a driving factor and could change anyone’s opinion back then. There are many examples to use in this book for racism and I chose what I believe to be the best ones. Tom’s trial, The treatment of Dr.Raymond, and how racism gives power in Maycomb. Tom's trial showed how no matter how much of a genuine person you are, the color of your skin can sway an opinion. In these times, you could get convicted of what you didn’t do and people would be blinded. “No such scared I'd hafta face up to what I didn’t do” (Harper Lee 198). This quote shows how even though Tom knows he is innocent he still is scared of the consequences and what might happen to him because of racial injustice. No matter how much evidence Tom truly had, he had no chance because of the injustice of Maycomb. “Tom was a dead man the minute Mayella Ewell opened her mouth and screamed” (Harper Lee 241). This …show more content…
Dr. Raymond and Atticus are perfect examples. Some people get shamed for being near black people and don’t know what to do. Raymond pretends to be a drunk so that the citizens of Maycomb will have an explanation for his behavior. In reality, he is simply jaded by the hypocrisy of white society and prefers living among blacks. This shows that he feels the need to lie just so he can soften society's blow. Another example is Atticus, who does not hide and disguise like Raymond. Atticus is one of the few residents of Maycomb committed to racial equality. When he agrees to defend Tom Robinson, a black man charged with raping a white woman, he exposes himself and his family to the anger of the white community. This is proof that no matter what, because of the prejudice he would be hated because he was kind and helped black
Even when the evidence overwhelmingly supports Tom Robinson’s innocence, the jury’s bias towards blacks convicts Tom as guilty and is the reason for his eventual death. However, Atticus’s strong efforts leads to a lengthy discussion about the verdict of Tom’s case, which creates hope for a turning point in Maycomb, where whites and blacks are treated equal, because no other trial involving a black person has taken this length of time. In summary, all the occurrences of injustice in To Kill a Mockingbird such as the trial of Tom Robinson are created by a group of people with the same immoral beliefs but can be fixed with strong determination
This image shows how the people in Maycomb based their beliefs, about Thomas Robinson, by his skin color. Most whites who were at the trial, didn’t want to hear anything that Mr. Robinson has to say, because he was black. Since he was black, the whites automatically assumed Mr. Robinson was guilty. Mr. Robinson says he didn’t mean any harm toward Miss. Mayella. “Mr. Finch, I tried.
The most prominent example of prejudice found in To Kill A Mockingbird, is prejudice against race. For the duration of the novel, racism is the theme that is most evidently found. This is because half of the novel focuses mainly on the Tom Robinson trial; and with the trial, comes an angry community full of hateful views. Cecil Jacobs implies, “My folks said your daddy was a disgrace an’ that nigger oughta hang from the water tank” (Lee 85). This quote is a reminder of the racism that portrays the South.
As stated prior, segregation and Jim Crow Laws promoted racist ideas and actions. In the book To Kill a Mockingbird, written by Harper Lee, examples of post Plessy v Ferguson racism is quite prevalent throughout the book. The most significant example is during the court trial scene, where Atticus proves Bob Ewell had falsely accused Tom Robinson of rape, yet still wins the trial. After the trial had been lost, Atticus states “In our courts, when it's a white man's word against a black man's, the white man always wins,” to explain how racial inequality was the decisive factor in the trial, and not the truth. This is a perfect example of the struggle for racial equality, and the town of Maycomb backs up that ideal.
Social class and sexism take a major part in the lives of the people of Maycomb and affect the way they treat each other. Tom Robinson, a young man accused of a crime because of his race, is a main example of the blindness to prejudice in this novel. Throughout the novel the author discusses the issue of racism and its effects on people. When Atticus Finch took on defending Tom in court, people told him that he would lose the case because of Tom's race. Atticus was upset over the fact that the courts were biased, no matter how much evidence shows that they were innocent.
For instance, Tom Robinson was convicted of a crime, even though all odds were in his favor. This shows that the people in Maycomb do not care about what is right, but rather the color of a person's skin. On page 267, Scout says, “Calpurnia said Atticus told her that the day they took Tom to prison he just gave up hope. She said Atticus tried to explain things to him, and that he must do his best not to lose hope because Atticus was doing his best to get him free” (Lee 267). To explain, Tom was tired of putting his faith in the court system.
Despite Atticus's best efforts to prove his innocence, Tom is convicted. Several quotes from the novel illustrate the pervasive racism in Maycomb, such as when Mr. Raymond acknowledges the harm that white people have caused the black community, saying, "Cry about the hell white people give colored folks, without even stopping to think that they're people, too. " Pg.229 Conversely Another quote, from Scout, reveals the stereotype and prejudice that were rampant in Maycomb. She tells Mr. Raymond "Atticus says cheatin' a colored man is ten times worse than cheatin' a white man..."
While racism negatively afflicts the people of Maycomb, Atticus goes against many white people’s idea of a fair justice system, by properly defending him and attempting to not let Tom’s race be the only factor in his arrest (Lee 233). Atticus’s actions relate back to his idea of a courageous person putting up a fight even though they have already lost. His actions reflect his sympathy for others since he believes that all men should be equal, especially in the justice
In this novel, there are some parts that show racism. Atticus is the best lawyer in Maycomb. In chapter 9, he started to defends Tom Robinson. All the people in Maycomb disagree about defending Tom, Negro men. However, he believes Tom Robinson and Atticus work hard to defend him.
Atticus knows there will be a lot criticism from people all around the town of Maycomb; a heavily white populated area. Nevertheless, Atticus does not care and tries everything he can possibly do, to save Tom Robinson’s life. Thus shows, that not all people of white color are prejudice and racist, because there are beings like Atticus who have chosen to fight against the crowd and bring society an inch closer towards equality. Throughout the story, not only does Atticus have to suffer from hateful people around the town, but his two children also have to deal with boat loads of mischief, that comes with having a white father as lawyer, that is defending a
Essay In the novel ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ by Harper Lee, there are many important messages shown throughout the book. However the primary focus was set on racial prejudice that existed in the 1930s-1940’s in the fictional town of Maycomb County. The racism in the novel was very much a reality in 1930s-1940s America. A very good example of the racial prejudice that existed was in the courtroom during Tom Robinson’s trial, an innocent Negro man held against his will for a crime he did not commit.
Atticus says that a person's conscience doesn't always agree with what most people think, showing how bad racism is. Bob Ewell accuses Tom Robinson of raping his daughter even though Bob is the one that beat his own daughter. This is all because Tom is black, and this is an example of racism. Tom is found guilty even though he is innocent and dies because of it, showing how bad racism is at this time. According to Jones,“The real mad dog in Maycomb is the racism that denies the humanity of Tom Robinson.”
In society, people are of aware of racism. Through the use of external conflict and setting, Harper Lee emphasizes the awareness of racism in the South. From the events after the trial to a “friendly” conversation, racism is a clear subject. Through To Kill a Mockingbird, Lee uses external conflict to illustrate that the idea of racism being something taught. For example, Jem and Scout always walk past their neighbor Mrs. Dubose.
Lee uses Miss Gates’s ironic views of Hitler and Tom’s trial to show how racial prejudice causes crimes against African Americans to be considered less than crimes committed against white people. A mockingbird is then used to symbolize Tom Robinson as an innocent person wrongly convicted of a crime because of his skin color. The misunderstood characterization of Arthur Radley shows how society will let prejudice guide their imaginated view on the lives of people they don't understand. All three characters provide examples of how a preconceived opinion of one person or a whole race can cause drastic misunderstandings and
You may be surprised by how some individuals feel angry and offended at others simply because of the pigment of their skin. These individuals let their hatred of those that are different from them control their actions to the point that they bring harm and malice upon these people. This piece of writing showcases that and also addresses how racism in Maycomb is viewed and how the people in Maycomb feel about those with different skin tones as well. There are those individuals that do not intend to be racist but the way that their society is programmed they unintentionally contribute to the racist population. The racism that occurs in To Kill A Mockingbird is very present and normalized.