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To kill a mocking bird - With specific reference to the extract on p.232 to p.234, ["Immediately thereafter"... "Until you start wearing dresses more often"] comment on the portrayal of women inthe novel. Discuss at least 4 characters.

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Introduction

With specific reference to the extract on p.232 to p.234, ["Immediately thereafter"... "Until you start wearing dresses more often"] comment on the portrayal of women in the novel. Discuss at least 4 characters. In To Kill a Mockingbird, Scout is always referred as a tomboy, because she "dresses like a boy" and "behaves like a boy". As a matter of fact, there is no such way to determine one's gender from his / her character. Do all girls wear dresses? Should all boys behave in a rude way? Does it matter if a boy speaks softly, should he be referred as "camp"? The answer of all the questions above should be no. If you say yes, then you are stereotypical against one of the genders. Since one of the main themes of To Kill a Mockingbird is prejudice, the author uses this opportunity to describe also the prejudice of women in Maycomb County. Throughout the whole book, not only the Missionary Tea Party as mentioned in the question, the author tries to divide the woman characters into four groups. ...read more.

Middle

She is a town gossip. She deliberately embarrasses Scout by saying, "I thought you wanted to be a lawyer, you've already commenced going to court." She makes the ladies around laugh and at the same moment, she gains popularity of being the "mighty" one. She does not consider Scout's situation and feelings. This action proves that she is far from being a lady who is usually well behaved and considerable. She can only stay as a town gossip. Mrs. Merriweather is also an example of this group's female. She refers Tom Robinson's wife as "that darkie's wife", which is a complete and utter racist comment to the black people. The third group of female characters are those who are neither ladies nor town gossips. They could be neither of them because of their social status. Mayella Ewell is one example of this group. She belongs to the group of people who are regarded as social outcasts. She does not have any friends but loads of siblings and an irresponsible, always-drunk father. ...read more.

Conclusion

if I spilled anything Calpurnia would have to wash my dress again for tomorrow.") She experienced the sarcastic way Miss Stephanie Crawford behaves (or else she will not have specifically mentioned it in the book.) She experienced the kind, friendly and nice way Miss Maudie Atkinson behaves (as mentioned above, "she never laughed at me (Scout) unless I meant to be funny.") She experiences the subservient, humble way Calpurnia behaves. She also experiences the domineering and self-centered way Aunt Alexandra behaves (she always wants her to be a lady.) From these aspects, she starts to develop her own way of thinking, the way she believes to be the best way to live with. We can see how mature Scout is from the way she narrates the story. That is because she has experienced enough from the previous generation that brings her understanding and consideration. In Maycomb County, there are all sorts of women: from ladies to town gossip, from social outcast to a modern family child who is growing up. There is no exact answer to the question "how a woman should behave?" You can never understand a person until, to borrow a sentence from Atticus, "climb into his (her) skin and walk around in it." ...read more.

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