To Kill A Mockingbird Essay Example

“Judgement is forced upon us by experience.” (Samuel Johnson) In the book To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee provides a unique description of the experiences in Maycomb, the town in which To Kill A Mockingbird takes place. Furthermore, Lee uses Tom Robinson’s trial and Arthur (Boo) Radley to express the idea that false judgment leads to regrettable actions and sorrow.

Tom Robinson’s trial should be one to remember in the town of Maycomb, especially because of the actions that take place after. Mayella Ewell, the daughter of Bob Ewell, accuses Tom Robinson- an African American man that resides in Maycomb. As for the Ewells, a white family, but everyone in Maycomb still disrelishes them. During the trial, Atticus Finch does not only agree to be Tom Robinson’s Lawyer and assists his case, but provided a marvelous case. In the course of Tom Robinson's testimony, there appeared to be a dilemma with one of Tom’s statements, the conversation goes like so, “Mr. Gilmer smiled grimly at the jury ‘You’re a mighty good fellow, it seems-did all this for not one penny?’ ‘Yes suh, I felt sorry for her, she seemed to try more’n the rest of ‘em-’ ‘You felt sorry for her, you felt sorry for her?’ Mr. Gilmer seemed ready to rise to the ceiling. The witness realized his mistake and shifted uncomfortably in the chair. But the damage was done. Below us, nobody liked Tom Robinson's answer. Mr. Gilmer paused a long time to let it sink in.” (Lee 263-264). The phrase “not one penny” creates the image of Tom Robinson; a positive, beneficial man, who opens up the jury in order to see that Tom does not only show humility, but tries genuinely when answering questions. Moreover, when Tom Robinson states “Yes suh, I felt sorry for her” he implies that she can be different than other light skin citizens of Maycomb, but since Tom inhabits in African American culture, he can not answer with that type of disrespect towards light skin citizens because at that time Tom valued a lot less than light skin citizens. However, the sentence “The witness realized his mistake and shifted uncontrollably in the chair” connotes the idea that Tom has common sense and realizes that he had done something wrong. After discussing for a long time, the jury states, “Guilty...guilty...guilty...guilty...”(282). Considering the fact of Tom Robinson the African American man. The fact that it took the jury time to determine that Tom has committed the felony or not already astonishes people. Despite the fact that Atticus provides a prodigious amount of evidence during the trial. Which means the decision of the jury stays unjustified. After the trial, Tom Robinson is able to allocate to the Maycomb penitentiary. Before having another trial, Scout receives a word. The word conveys the fact that Tom Robinson has tried to escape from prison, got shot and killed.

Arthur (Boo) Radley, another citizen, not only judged for his past actions and behavior, but is also able to prove others wrong when he gets out of his shell to help those in need, especially Boo, a recluse who chooses to stay at home and have no social life. The book describes Boo giving gifts to Jem, Scout, and Dill. Although he seems like a swell guy, Boo gets mentally damaged by his cold-blooded father. The citizens of Maycomb believe that the evil takes over the goodness and intelligence of Arthur (Boo) Radley, judging him which damages him.

Since most people see a scary and evil image when thinking of Boo, the description of Boo can be too much, but it just helps justify the idea of how mankind judges people from previous experiences. Furthermore, in chapter one Jem describes what he imagines Arthur (Boo) Radley looks like, "Boo was about six-and-a-half feet tall, judging from his tracks; he dined on raw squirrels and any cats he could catch, that's why his hands were bloodstained—if you ate an animal raw, you could never wash the blood off. There was a long jagged scar that ran across his face; what teeth he had were yellow and rotten; his eyes popped, and he drooled most of the time" (lee 16). Here, Jem describes Boo as a very scary man; the phrase “six-and-a-half feet tall” creates an image of Boo, a freakishly tall setting a scary tone which can terrify some people. Jem also talks about what he thinks Boo’s nutrition looks like; the words “he dined on raw squirrels and any cats he could catch” reflect a barbaric tone, which reveals that Jem thinks that Boo takes barbaric actions. Moreover, Jem continues to exaggerate with his description of Arthur by saying “his hands were bloodstained”, which reveals that the impersonation of Boo is not only of a mean person, but also of a killer that has no limits. Towards the end of the book,r when Jem and Scout return from the school after a Halloween play that Scout had performed in, someone begins to chase them. When Jem realizes this she tells Scout to run, but the guy who starts chasing them has catches up. Jem manages to break free and drag Scout all the way up to the road before they get pulled back. After more struggling, Scout searches for Jem, but she only finds the smells of a man with a beard smelling of whiskey. Scout continues to walk home when she sees a man carrying Jem home, Arthur (Boo) Radley, who in fact saved Jem, “He slowly squeezed the breath out of me. I could not move. Suddenly he was jerked backwards and flung on the ground, almost carrying me with him. [...] I made my way along in what I thought was the direction of the road. I was not sure, because I had been turned around so many times. But I found it and looked down to the street light. A man was passing under it. [...] He was carrying Jem.” (Lee 351-352). Bob Ewell finds himself furious since Atticus embarrasses him and wants to get back at him by hurting his loved ones. The words “He slowly squeezed the breath out of me” reveal that Bob Ewell is a furious man who has the intentions to hurt Jem and Scout. This shows the way in which Maycomb dislikes the Ewells as a result of their vicious actions. Boo then comes out of the blue and helps Jem. by saying “Suddenly he was jerked backwards and flung on the ground”, the author justifies Boo’s actions using his force and power to not hurt others, but rather help Jem. This is essentially significant as it shows Maycomb how Boo is not mean, but has a marvelous heart.

As a final point, as a result of Tom Robinson’s trial and Arthur (Boo) Radleys actions Maycomb realizes how false judgment leads to regrettable actions and sorrow. Harper Lee demonstrates this in the Tom Robinson’s trial. Despite the enormous amount of astonishing evidence that Atticus provides, Tom Robinson is still charged guilty and later tries to run away as he gets allocated to prison. Later on, Tom gets shot and killed. As for Arthur (Boo) Radley, a recluse who chooses to stay home and have no social life. Boo has a lot of goodness in him, but because of his father, the citizens of Maycomb believe that he is evil as well. Instead of giving up and allowing people to think that way, he proves everyone wrong by killing Bob Ewell and saving Jem from not only getting hurt, but also killed. Finally, these experiences emphasize the readers the importance of not using false judgment since it can lead to regrettable actions and sorrow.


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