Inhumanity In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Sylvester Stallone once said, “The biggest and most interesting crisis in the world is the human crisis… You don’t need a gimmick, it’s just man against man and their intolerance of each other.” This intolerance is shown throughout To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee. It leads to inhumanity, loss of childhood innocence and loneliness, all of which are key themes that the characters in the novel experience. Inhumanity is defined by Mr Dolphus Raymond as, “The simple hell people give other people” (P 222). In the novel, inhumanity is the root of many people’s loneliness and the origin of many children’s loss of innocence. Jem and Scout are taught a very different, and more humane, way of treating people, regardless of how different the person may be, by their father, Atticus. He teaches them that “you never really understand a person… until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it” (P 33). Scout tries to apply this as she struggles to understand the inhumanity she witnesses around her, but is largely unsuccessful until the end of the novel. Only after walking Arthur home on the night Arthur saved her life did she truly understand this; “Atticus was right. One time he said you never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them. Just standing on the Radley porch was enough.” (P 308), which clearly portrays that Jean Louise’s transition from a young child to a young adult has begun, in contrast to the inhumanity she treats Walter Cunningham
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