Examples Of Redefining The Pre-Written Reality To Kill A Mockingbird

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Redefining the Pre-Written Reality: Scout’s Journey through To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird, a novel by Harper Lee, is an incredible book about a trial concerning the rape of a white woman. This seemingly simple basic plotline is full of themes that touched the heart of many when the book was published in 1960. Many controversial ideas were touched upon by Harper Lee, especially regarding the themes of race, gender, and class. The theme of gender is particularly important in the case of the trial, as the protection of Southern womanhood was a duty above all else in the South during the 1930s. Southern womanhood was a definition developed by Southern society which included the expectation of woman’s chastity. Naturally, rape contrasted …show more content…

The victim in the To Kill a Mockingbird trial took advantage of this, with pressure from her father, and falsely accused a black man of rape. Despite obvious holes in evidence and a general public opinion that the victim was lying, jurors convicted the black man because to do otherwise would have been unheard of, and viewed as not fulfilling the duty of protecting Southern womanhood. Although the main character, Scout, does not understand much of the trial and its workings and themes, she does understand that there is a definition of Southern womanhood, which she is supposed to fulfill. In To Kill a Mockingbird, Scout rebels against the idea of becoming the ideal Southern woman embodied by her Aunt Alexandra by becoming a tomboy in every way. Many people view To Kill a Mockingbird as a novel about Scout growing up and embracing what it means to be a Southern woman, when at heart, it is a novel about Scout redefining Southern womanhood and embracing the definition shown to her by three women with great influence in her life. In short, To Kill a …show more content…

What was it about this one book that was life-changing for so many people? In order for a book to be life-changing, it must be relevant. The themes in To Kill a Mockingbird ring true of today’s issues, which perhaps says something about our progress or lack thereof concerning issues of racism, sexism, and class. However, I’d like to think that anyone who reads this book walks away more educated, and with fewer biases. But why should you, the reader, care? I hope that someday, not a single issue in this book is relevant. Of course, at the moment, all of the issues are relevant, including gender and the idea of womanhood. Is the issue of gender relevant to you? Most likely, it is. Although society has changed its definition of womanhood, there is certainly still a box which all women are expected to fit. If someone who feels pressure to fit a box, womanhood or otherwise, reads this book, hopefully he or she will realize that s/he can redefine the box to fit. What boxes can you

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