The novel "To Kill a Mockingbird" authored by Harper Lee is an unsophisticated view of life in South America in 1930s.The novel shows many instances, where racism manifests itself in Maycomb town. Some instances are obvious and open, while others are more insidious. Throughout the story all the blacks are labeled as niggers, and people who show love or support them, are referred to as nigger lovers.
The Maycomb County society had a definitive structure with four classes. The upper class, which accommodated white collar Caucasians who were thought to be rich. The second class entailed the blue collar workers, white workers, and farmers. The third class was the white trash. These are the Ewells, who relied on welfare for survival and lived at the dump. The lowest and fourth class included all the blacks who lived in this county. Although there existed several social levels in the Black community, people of color were generally considered to be in the lowest class of society. Therefore, the Blacks lived apart from the whites in their own section of town and seemed to have a society separate from the whites.
One blatant prejudice of racism in the Maycomb County was demonstrated in the trial of Tom Robinson. Tom was warm hearted, hard-working black man who out of his kindness, decided to help a poor white trash named Miss Mayella. His major disadvantage was because he was black. Miss Mayellas father Bob Ewell, who was a white drunk, accused Robinson of raping Mayella his daughter. Tom Robinson's lawyer Atticus Finch argued that Tom was innocent (Lee, Harper 23). He further argued that Mayella was the one who made sexual advances to Tom Robinson, and as a result her father thrashed her for kissing a Black man. Conversely, despite the presented undeniable facts all the white jury favored Ewells and sentenced Tom to death.
Another instance where racism manifests itself is in Mr. Dolphus Raymonds case. Dolphus was a wealthy and respected, member of the community, who chose to live with black community. In Maycomb, this was considered a felony. Dolphus knew well that members of the white community would never understand his choices, so he pretended to be a drunk. White people despised him because he lived and mingled with black people.
The Finch family suffered a lot just because Atticus was appointed to be Tom Robinsons lawyer. Jem and Scout suffered more from this hatred. The neighborhood children verbally abused Jem and Scout (Lee, Harper 30). They constantly fought with their peers, including cousins, because these children could not understand Atticus' courage. Most people, who were unhappy with what Atticus was doing, just kept away from him, making it like cold war.
In conclusion, racism negatively impacts the lives of people who live in Maycomb. This vice killed Tom Robinson, and at the same time, led to cold war between Mr. Dolphus Raymond Scout, Jem, the entire finch family and the white community. In this novel, racism is the main theme, which manifests itself in the entire story. It is a big shame that some people are judging others by the skin color. Racism is deep rooted in this county and the incident where Miss Mayella is forced by her father to accuse an innocent person of rape. This creates a cycle that seemed not to end any time soon.
Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird. Philadelphia: Lippincott, 1960. Print.
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