Racism in To Kill a Mockingbird 14p Div Essay

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Racism in To Kill A Mockingbird

Submitted To Mr. Milkovich

Submitted by Divya Bhupal Harper Lee’s Great novel “To Kill A Mockingbird” is set in the Old South at which time racism played a prominent role. Characters Scout Finch and Jem Finch journey through their childhood, lead by their father Atticus Finch, as they mature and learn about the true nature of the society around them. Harper Lee's novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” revolves on the theme of racism as conveyed through the characters from both Maycomb County’s white and black communities. Many people in Maycomb County disapprove of Atticus defending a coloured person.Even young children make crude remarks about Atticus and his defendant Tom Robinson. Many of these things that people say about Atticus deeply bother Scout. So much so, that even though she promised Atticus she would not get into anymore fights, Scout almost started one with Cecil Jacobs when he said to her “My folks said your daddy was a disgrace an’ that nigger oughta hand from the water tank (pg.76).” Cecil has learned these racists habits from his parents and is now showing them at school. He now thinks that any white man with integrity should never try to defend or help a negro, and anyone who does should be shunned and disgraced. Even if it is simply because the innocent man Atticus is trying to hopelessly defend is a negro. Mr. Dolphus Raymond is a white man who is known for constantly being in the company of coloured people and his mixed children. When Dill comes to town the summer of Tom Robinson’s trial and sees him sitting around many coloured folks, he wonders why. Jem tells him he always has, and it is probably because he likes coloured people better anyway. Upon hearing that Mr. Raymond also has a clouded wife and mixed children he remarks that “He doesn’t look like trash (pg.161).” This is the racist assumption Dill makes that only the poorest of white men would have a coloured wife or want to be around colour people. It is made with no other knowledge of Mr.Raymond and is only based on the fact that he seems to prefer coloured people and that he has a negro wife and mixed children. Even though Racism is more commonly know to be from white people it can com from both negro and white parties. Mixed children are half white and half half coloured, Mr.Raymond is also known for having many mixed children. Scout had asked Jem what one was. He told her that they are very sad because they do not fit in anywhere because “Coloured folks won’t have ’em because they’re half white; white folks won’t have ‘em cause they’re coloured, so they’re just in-betweens, don’t belong anywhere (pg.161).” Mixed children are outcasts in both parties, they are either too coloured or too white. Neither party wants to accept someone who is a different colour, and looks different from they are. They are not willing to accept a person based on personality and actions, only skin colour. This leaves the mixed children stuck in between, forever doomed to be outcasts of society. In this novel it is made blatantly clear that people of colour in the Old South will almost always be blamed, no mater how innocent a person truly is. Dill,Jem,and Scout were trying to look a Boo Radley through window on the Radley property. While they were in Mr. Nathan Radley’s collard patch, Mr. Nathan though he saw something and fired his shotgun. The trio hears his shotgun go off and rushes back to Atticus out fear, the only consequence is that Jem looses his pants. When they get back and ask Miss Stephanie what happened she tells them that “Mr. Radley sot a negro in his collard patch (pg.54).” Mr.Radley quickly assumes that only a black person would commit a crime, and does not even entertain the possibility of Dill, Jem, and Scout as the culprits simply because they are white. Mr. Radley believes that only negroes are foolish enough to commit such a crime. This just goes to show someone that in the