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How Does Lee Present Prejudice In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Innocence is a time in one’s life of carefreeness and peace. In youth, children have yet to experience the harsh realities of life, and when they do, it is often hard to cope with. In her novel To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee portrays Maycomb’s prejudiced ways through an unfair trial of an innocent man, and through the treatment of certain members of the community. The young narrator, Scout, and her older brother, Jem, experience growth and learn compassion when the trial exacerbates Maycomb’s intense intolerance. In this novel, Lee uses the characterization of the Finch children to demonstrate that innocent children who have been exposed to their community’s prejudice, often have trouble adjusting, but need a mentor figure to help them mature.…show more content…
Yet they still view him as a mysterious figure. Scout recalls, “... crimes committed... were his work... although the culprit was Crazy Addie... people still looked at the Radley Place, unwilling to discard their initial suspicions.” (13) Scout’s remembrance of how the people were “unwilling to discard” their assumptions even when they knew that Boo was not the criminal shows Maycomb’s prejudice. Scout’s recollection not only foreshadows further intolerance in the community but also shows a perspective from young and innocent member, and how she follows the beliefs of the adults. Soon, Jem and Scout mention Boo Radley to their new friend Dill. Being a newcomer to Maycomb, Dill becomes curious and wants to know what Boo is like. In an attempt to give Dill a sense of who he is, “Jem gave a reasonable description of Boo: Boo was about six and a half feet tall... he dined on raw squirrels... his eyes popped.” (20) Jem’s exaggerated description demonstrates the community’s intense prejudice towards Boo Radley. The people are able to alienate a member based off of speculations. Scout, an innocent member of Maycomb, has grown up with the idea that Boo acts and looks like
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