Civil Rights and 'To Kill a Mockingbird' Analytical Essay by Nicky

This paper explores the subject of civil rights as discussed in the novel 'To Kill a Mockingbird' by Harper Lee.
# 146564 | 1,530 words | 2 sources | MLA | 2011 | US

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In this article, the writer notes that history is a powerful teacher and that one novel that demonstrates this point is Harper Lee's novel, 'To Kill a Mockingbird'. The writer maintains that this novel teaches many truths but perhaps the most significant involves the importance of civil rights and the dangers of prejudice. The writer discusses that 'To Kill a Mockingbird' is an excellent novel for instruction that teaches about the prejudices of others. The writer points out that Lee's novel emphasizes the issue of prejudice through the eyes of children that have not lived long enough to become conditioned by the prevailing thought and norms regarding a person's race. The writer concludes that written in a time of civil unrest with the Supreme Court declaring that segregation is unconstitutional and African-Americans earning their right to live as free citizens and be treated as such, 'To Kill a Mockingbird' remains timeless.

From the Paper:

"Historical parallels provide strength and validity to To Kill A Mockingbird. Tom's trial parallels the Scottsboro Boys trials in 1931. The cases are similar in that African-American men were accused of raping two white women. Another historical event that can be seen as a parallel in To Kill A Mockingbird is the Brown v. Topeka Board of Education trial in 1954. The Supreme Court ruled that segregation was unconstitutional but what we learn from this event is that while laws can be hanged or instituted, people and their prejudices do not change so easily, if at all. This was never more true than in the South. Tom's circumstance illustrates just how little people change even when the law insists they behave in a particular way. When people are told to do something, sometimes they become more aggressive because they resent being ordered to do something they feel is wrong or unnecessary."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird. New York: Warner Books. 1982.
  • Smykowski,Adam. "Symbolism and Racism in To Kill a Mockingbird." 2000. GALE Resource Database. Information Retrieved March 19, 2009. <>

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Civil Rights and 'To Kill a Mockingbird' (2011, January 04) Retrieved July 02, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Civil Rights and 'To Kill a Mockingbird'" 04 January 2011. Web. 02 July. 2020. <>