To Kill A Mockingbird Compassion Analysis

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How can a story brimming with racism and resentment also be filled with compassion? Although the world is filled with people who do appalling things, there are still some out there who practice generosity and lead by example. In To Kill a Mockingbird, these people are characters like Scout, Atticus, or Tom. Throughout the novel, these characters and more take action to show humanity in circumstances that they don’t have to, and add a layer of compassion to the theme. In Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, the actions of Maycomb County citizens during the harsh times of the 1930’s show that any given person, regardless of race or societal status, should be worthy of compassion. These principles are demonstrated in the story by the Cunninghams, Boo Radley, and Tom Robinson.
To begin, the Cunningham family
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Tom Robinson was able to show Mayella a great amount of empathy in doing her work for free, simply out of the goodness of his heart, as Mr. Gilmer mocks saying, “‘You’re a mighty fine fellow, it seems- did all this for not one penny?’” (197). Little did he know that Mayella would betray him later, yet he was still willing to do all the work that she asked him to. While Mr. Gilmer used his works to make fun of Tom, one cannot deny that they are true- Tom was definitely a ‘fine fellow’ for helping Mayella out with her chores. The other source of decency that comes from the trial isn’t even directly compassion, but a lack of cruelty. When Helen Robinson’s husband is killed and Mr. Ewell lashes out at her on her way to work, she does not speak negatively of him or attack him back. Helen maintains a level of quiet respect that is compassion in its own way. She was not willing to be negative to a person that certainly deserved negativity, but showed respect instead. Overall, the trial is a surprising source of generosity even with the terrible event in
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