To Kill A Mocking Bird Theme

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Appearances and Reality Throughout the novel To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, there are a multitude of examples of prejudice. These examples of prejudice are mainly directed towards the black citizens, simply based on the fact that there skin is a different color than that of the white citizens. This would not occur if the people where shown what they were doing, and someone explained to them what it was causing. The main theme represented by this novel is “appearances do not reflect realities and therefore quick judgments and stereotypes can be misleading.” Of course, these people don’t realize their mistakes, and therefore are unable to realize the wrong, and injustice it causes. At one point in the story, it seems as though other people besides the Finch family are seeing that judging people based on their looks is wrong. Ms. Gates, Scout's third grade teacher, explains to the class that prejudice is a bad thing. She states “Persecution comes from people who are prejudiced.” (p.245) She emphasizes this to the class, showing that she really understands and despises it when people look down on others based solely upon their looks. Also, a little bit before, Ms. Gates explains to the children what democracy is, and how it works. Scout says that a democracy means that their is “equal rights for everyone.” (p.245) The teacher then goes on to state how the U.S. is a democracy, and how that differs from Germany as a dictatorship. She feels that they are a better country than Germany because they supposedly treat everyone equally; however, this is not the case. Just a couple of days before this teaching this lesson, Ms. Gates was guilty of her own act of prejudice. It occurred at the courthouse right after the decision was made by the jury. She says “it’s time somebody taught ‘em a lesson, they were getting’ way about themselves an’ the next thing they think

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