FC: To Kill a Mockingbird Literary Analysis By: Caitlynn Metze
1: Table of Contents: Part I: pg.2-8 Part II:pg. 9-12 Part III: pg.13-16 Part VI: pg.17 Part V: pg.18-19 Part VI: pg.20-22 Part VII: pg.23
2: Part I: Setting and Historical Context | "Maycomb was an old town, but it was a tired old town when I first knew it..."(Lee 6). | This explains that Maycomb has been around for a long time and the residents there are a community of people that have known each other forever but it's such an run down town that generations of families are the only ones around to enjoy it.
3: " The Radley place was low, was once white with a deep front porch and green shutters, but no long ago darkened to the color of slate-gray yard around it" (Lee 10). | This explains in detail to give us the idea that the Radley place gives off a creepy, eery feel just by the look of the house.
4: "The courthouse square was covered with picnic parties sitting on newspapers we shying down biscuit and syrup with milk from fruit jars...In far corners of the square, the Negroes sat quietly in the sun, dining on sardines, crackers, and more vivid flavors of Nehi-Cola" (Lee 214). | This says how crowded the courthouse was at the time of the trial and that the whites and blacks sit separate while the whites sit on newspapers nicely folded the blacks just sit in the corners under the trees to get cool shade.
5: The setting is important to understanding the characters because the setting helps set the feeling you get when that character is spoken to or talked about. It shows how they live, act, and how their real characteristics are. The setting shows us that the conflicts occurring in the story are resembled to what actually happens in the South in this time period. With all the segregation that goes on in the South at this time that the blacks are suppose to stay with what they had and when they get accused of something by the white people even if their not the person that committed the crime.
6: The Scottsboro boys was a group of boys that were charged with raping 2 girls on a train. They were falsely accused and sentenced to death after the first of many trials. It took 6 years for all charges to be dropped against them. One of the two girls confessed to the truth and the jury still found the boys guilty because segregation was so bad in the South. | THe Scottsboro Boys
7: Emmett Till | Emmett Till was a young boy that was murdered for two words that he had said to a white women. These two words were taken the wrong way to what Emmett meant to say. That night he was taken by two men and hung to his death.
8: *Nine black boys are being accused of raping two white women. *The lawyer that defended the Scottsboro boys inspired the character Atticus. *How Emmett Till just taken in the middle of the night. *The innocence of the youngest Scottsboro boy only being 12 and being accused of something that he probably doesn't even know what really happened with the two women that night on the train. | *Tom Robinson is being accused of raping a white women. *Atticus like the lawyer defending the Scottsboro boys is defending a black man. *How in the middle of the night a big mob was coming to kill Tom but, Scout stepped in and some how changed the mobs mind and they left willingly. *The innocence of Scout and how she really doesn't know what is going on with it being someones life at steak from a different race.
9: This book is told in 1st person throughout the book by Scout, an 8 year old girl, who tries her best to tell us about how her life is. Her innocence shows the other characters that maybe people shouldn't be so judgmental about the color of someone else's skin. "I ran to the backyard and pulled an old car tire from under the house. I slipped it up to the front yard. "I'm first!" I said" (Lee 49). This quote is showing how the book is qualified for 1st person point of view. | Part II: Point of View
10: She chose to have the story told from Scout's point of view because it shows the innocence of a child. Scout doesn't know really whats going on in certain situations and what things mean. So when people see this they see how things could change in their minds about conflicts that occur in the story and see that the color of someones skin doesn't matter their still a human being.
11: Atticus' POV | "This court is now in session, everybody rise." The flamboyant voices in the courtroom instantly became quiet murmurs as the loud bang of Judge Taylor's gavel returned us all to our seats. Tom sat down next to me and suddenly, I remembered everything that was at stake here. An innocent man's life. Tom Robinson had a family. He had a wife and children, and here I was with his life in my hands. Although I had tried to keep my mind from wandering away from the situation currently at hand, I wondered if Tom's children were here today. His wife was not, so it seemed unlikely, but I still lacked comfort. I was just content that my own kin were not here to witness the unjust that was sure to come. The trial begins with the first official to arrive on the scene, Heck Tate, the sheriff of Maycomb County, ready to give his testimony. While I trusted Tate and his will to do what was right, I can tell he does not fully believe that Tom is innocent. He fostered in his mind the same prejudice as the other white people in the room. My mind flashed back to the night when the mob of men came rushing to the jail. It seemed like all I could do in that moment was stand before the men like a deer in headlights, frozen in astonishment as they rushed closer. Tate seemed to be the only one who showed any kind of remorse for his actions. Now, it's almost Toms turn. I don't have much longer, but I better prepare myself for this brutal trial that Tom and I are going to face.
12: Part III: Conflicts | Man vs. Society External | The conflict between Tom Robinson and the whole community accusing him of raping a white women.
13: Atticus is defending a black person which everyone seems to be against his support for the blacks. | Man vs. Society External
14: Scout is being bullied at school for Atticus representing Tom Robinson in his trial because he's black even though she doesn't know whats going on. | Man vs. Society External
15: *Tom Robinson vs. Maycomb citizens Before- Tom is being accused of raping a white girl. After: Tom is shot and killed when he tried to escape from prison and he got over the fence and was shot. Atticus and Tom Robinson vs. Maycomb citizens Before: People start looking down on Atticus for representing Tom. After: Atticus still represents Tom because he knows that Tom is innocent. | Scout Jem and Atticus Before: Scout and Jem feel they are being attacked for their dads choosing to represent Tom. After:Scout wants to beat up kids at school for making fun of Atticus tells her not to touch any of them it will make them look bad.
16: Part IV: Characterization | Dynamic Character: *Jem- a young boy who likes getting into trouble and wants to be like Atticus. *Jem is dynamic because he also has problems with growing up and learning about the world around him. *Scout is a tomboyish little girl not to sure what is going on around her. *Scout is considered dynamic because in the beginning her only concern is Boo Radley to come out. In the end she learns the prejudice and racism in the world and what its like to walk in someone else's shoes.
17: Static Characters: *Atticus- Kind, caring, compassionate, and an understanding man. *Even after everything he's been through with the trial. Atticus doesn't think bad of anyone and is all the man he was in the beginning. *Bob Ewell- White trash, sarcastic, liar and dirty Bob is the same kind of person throughout the entire story and in the end it gets him killed when he attempts to kill Scout and Jem.
18: Part V: Symbols | What does the Mockingbird symbolize? | The significance of To Kill a Mockingbird is that even though white people do not like black people it can cause innocent people to be convicted of crimes that they didn't even do. The mockingbird symbolizes the innocence of someone that didn't even do anything wrong. In the story Scout and Jem are told not to shoot the mockingbird because it didn't do anything wrong in the society all they did was sing. So this is comparing Tom as a mockingbird because Tom was accused of raping a young girl which didn't really happen she just accused him of because she knew that the jury wouldn't find him innocent even if they had proof that she was lying.
19: *Boo Radley: does not harm anyone of anything and does not disturb anyone. He saves Jem and Scout from Bob Ewell, so he doing Atticus a service, like the mockingbird does when it sings and asks for nothing in return. *Tom Robinson: an innocent man in the middle of a false rape charge, that just like the mockingbird represents innocence he helps Mayella Ewell when she needs it and does not cause trouble. He is a peaceful person that doesn't even seem like the kind to do something like that. *Scout Finch: Scout could be like a mockingbird because people see her as an innocent child during the time of Tom Robinson's trial. Scout being so young during this time allows her to tell the story through the innocent eyes of a child.
20: Part VI: Themes | First Theme: Innocence of a child is the antidote for anything that deals with racism or prejudice. Quote from book: "If you had been on that jury, son, and eleven other boys like you, Tom, would be a free man, so far nothing in your life. Has interfered with your reasoning process" (Lee 295). Prove the theme: This quote proves that the way Jem thinks and realizes what happened during the trial was wrong and that racism is a problem still effecting us today. Applied to real world: This theme can be used in everyday life because seeing the innocence of a child interacting with other children through school, or playing together, they don't care what each other look like as long as they have someone to play with.
21: Second Theme: All men should be equal in the eyes of the law. Quote from book: "But there is one way in this country in which all men are created equal, there is one human institution that makes paper than equal to Rockefeller... this institution is a court which you serve...in this country our courts greatest levelers and in our courts all when are created equal" (Lee 274). | Prove the theme: That in law situations everybody should be equal even if they did something wrong they should be served their punishment equally. Applied to real world: This theme can be used in real life because most people want to be treated with respect and therefore get respect returned back to you.
22: This theme can be used in everyday life because everyone makes their own decisions weather it be the way someone looks and how people are treated unfairly in everyday situations but since everyday has a voice today they are not seen as anything less of a person. | Third Theme: That racism can determine the outcome of things. Quote: "Those are twelve reasonable men in everyday life, Tom's jury but you saw something come between them and reason" (Lee 274). Prove of quote: Between the men the reason that came between them was racism and thats why they accused Tom Robinson guilty.
23: Part VII: Personal Reflection | The greatest part of the book was when Atticus gave his final speech to the jury at the trial. The way Atticus exclaims what he believes in and how he is such a powerful speaker helped bring his point across to thousands of readers. That he can move people just by the way he speaks to the audience is impressive. In his speech, he speaks the truth that people in the large crowded court room need to hear. The words that Atticus exclaimed were satisfying to hear as his take on equality was so much different than all the other conflicts in the book. The only objection that I had with this story was at the beginning of the story. It skips around so much that the storyline was confusing to follow, but once you reached part two it was easier to follow; therefore, the setting was all established and the story became familiar with Scout as a narrator. I feel reading this book at the time it came out caused people to be more aware about what went on at the time the book was published. People became more aware about what actually went on at this time in the South and what it was like when segregation was in full swing.