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How the ending of the novel manages to end or resolve the novel's key themes

Uploaded by Admin on Feb 25, 2001

“To Kill A Mockingbird” by Harper Lee is a classic novel that deals with two “mockingbirds” in Boo Radley and Tom Robinson. “They don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird,” says Atticus. Despite the stigma involved with such an action, Maycomb physically and socially kill two Mockingbirds. This theme and many more are resolved in the book’s ending.

One of the first key themes dealt with in the ending of novel is that of the first mockingbird, Boo Radley. Throughout the novel Scout, Jem and Dill are preoccupied with one of Maycomb’s “monsters”, Boo Radley. Finally, Scout has the chance to meet him, after “He gave…. [Scout and Jem] [Their] lives. Scout, through standing on the Radley porch and “Standing in [Boo’s] shoes and walking around in them”, finally understands Boo Radley. Furthermore, when Scout says, “he was real nice”, Atticus replies back “most people are, Scout, when you finally see them”, thus resolving the readers and Scout’s doubts about Boo Radley. With the description of his hair as "feathery," Boo is immediately identified with the "mockingbird" idea, especially with his slight appearance and fluttery hand movements. He has finally become a real person, completing the progression from monster to human; meanwhile, Mr. Ewell's evilness has turned him into a human monster, whose bristling facial stubble felt by Scout suggests an animal-like appearance.

Another key theme that is dealt with in depth, is that of the second mockingbird, Tom Robinson, the Negro who is killed trying to escape from jail after he is wrongfully accused and convicted for rape while helping a young woman. At the end of the book, the two mockingbirds collide, as Boo kills Bob Ewell, the young girl’s “white trash” father, in a scuffle between Bob and the Finch children. As Heck Tate says “ There’s a black boy dead for no reason, and the man responsible for it’s dead. Let the dead bury the dead this time…”.

During the course of this book, Harper Lee tries to show us people’s reactions when they have to choose between their prejudices and what is right. Tom Robinson is the recipient of unfair racial prejudice, as he finds out how a man’s false beliefs can override his better judgement. Boo Radley is also the victim of social prejudice. Just because he stays inside, people automatically...

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Uploaded by:   Admin

Date:   02/25/2001

Category:   To Kill A Mockingbird

Length:   3 pages (595 words)

Views:   1730

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