Symbolism, Essay

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“TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD” ESSAY How does the use of Scout as “To Kill a Mockingbird’s” narrator serve the purpose of Harper Lee? Harper Lee wrote “To Kill a Mockingbird” during a difficult time racially in her home state of Alabama. She chose an interesting narrator, Scout Finch, whose innocence plays a major role in Harper Lee’s story-telling. As an adult narrator, the story acts as a biography of her childhood. The narration of the story starts when Scout is six and her brother Jem is ten. Using this flashback method to the story, Scout reminiscences a set of significant events in her and her brother’s childhoods. Scout Finch is connected on the idea of innocence. The tone in the novel is childlike, somewhat humorous and nostalgic. This clearly defines her age and the lack of understanding she recognizes. Scout is a 6 year old girl with no understanding of mature language. For instance outside the jail Scout says "Well, Atticus, I was just sayin' to Mr. Cunningham that entailments are bad an' all that, but you said not to worry...that you all'd ride it out together....” “(p170)” Scout does not know that the men huddled around her father are planning to harm him. However, she uses her youth and innocence in the way she talks to Mr Cunningham as an old friend because she knows he works with Atticus, as well as knowing his son from school. This individualization of Mr. Cunningham humanizes the entire mob. As Scout continues talking of entailment, the mob all look at her "with their mouths half-open." Scout raises an odd question that no child would be asking at her age. “What’s rape, Cal?” “(p137)”asks Scout. Cal quickly tells Scout that “it’s somethin’ you will have to ask Mr Finch about…he can explain it better than I can” “(p137)”. Scout’s question is rather awkward, so it’s logical that Cal moves the responsibility of answering it onto Atticus. Cal then

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