• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To Kill a Mockingbird: GCSE Coursework

Extracts from this document...


To Kill a Mockingbird: GCSE Coursework By Michael Skuse 10Wi2 The theme of prejudice is central to the novel. A number of characters are discriminated against. Making close reference to the text discuss what you think Harper Lee wants us to learn about society as illustrated in her novel 'To Kill a Mockingbird' set in 1930's America. In this essay I will give my opinions on why in 'To Kill a Mockingbird', Harper Lee included a lot of prejudice and controversial issues in the 1930's. Also I will explore the ideas of why she would want the readers of the book in future generations to learn about the kinds of society in America in the 1930's. I feel that the book 'To Kill a Mockingbird' has many different ways of showing prejudice. One of the main displays of prejudice in the book is the court case and the apparent rape of Mayella Ewell which Tom Robinson is automatically accused and convicted of just because he is black. In this 1930's society white people are believed more than black people as black people are considered untrustworthy automatically because of their race. ...read more.


this shows how people in black churches have to cope with not having any hymn books etc, this is another way of Harper Lee showing how racism affects more than just how black people are treated, it also shows that it has an effect on how much money they have to spend even on church decorations and hymn books. I believe that the Ewells are the main 'Prejudice family' in the book as they are most likely to be the 'most racist' family in the book e.g. Mr Ewell is very adamant that Tom Robinson has raped his daughter just because he is black and because Mr Ewell is white he knows that he's got a high chance of being believed more over a black man just because of the society in that time. Whereas Atticus is much less prejudiced and he passes this quality onto Scout and Jem unlike Mr Ewell, Atticus uses reasoning and explains to Scout and Jem why he has an opinion or why someone is not liked or why they are discriminated against in the community but Mr Ewell doesn't tell Mayella why he doesn't like someone or any of his reasons for being racist. ...read more.


For example Miss Stephanie Crawford tells Jem all about Boo which also means that she could have told other people who would judge him on what she tells them. On page 17 Miss Stephanie Crawford tells Jem that Boo "drove a pair of scissors into his parents leg, pulled them out, wiped them on his pants, and resumed his activities" which leads people to believe things about Boo. In conclusion Harper Lee wrote a lot of morals into the book including Prejudice, Racism and Peer pressure to teach people about common life in the 1930's and the life of black people in these times. She also uses different methods of teaching in the book, with Atticus teaching Scout about racism in the community, with acts of racism being displayed against Tom Robinson and also Atticus being spat at for defending a black man, these different ways of showing the ways in which people can be discriminated against and showing how life was in the 1930's make the book a good way of learning about everyday life in a community with racist people(Mr Ewell), people easily lead by peer pressure (Mr Cunningham) and also people who don't agree with racism and who are against it (Atticus). ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Harper Lee section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

This essay shows knowledgeof the novel and addresses the question of prejudice with some thoughtful comments.
However the essay needs to be more structured with topic sentences at the beginning of each paragraph. Sentences need to be shorter, more quotes are needed and sometimes ideas and arguments are repeated.

Marked by teacher Katie Dixon 29/04/2012

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Harper Lee essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Examine the nature of prejudice in 'To Kill a Mockingbird'. Are there any signs ...

    4 star(s)

    I would conclude from this, that they must believe that they are either above the law, or that the law, which is represented by white judges, juries, etc., will forgive them for murdering such a low life. In the courtroom scene, we find that the jury have to make a

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Explore how Harper Lee presents the theme of prejudice in To Kill a Mockingbird.(TM)

    4 star(s)

    Harper Lee shows us that prejudice can be wrong because at the end of the book we meet 'Boo' and he is nothing like the rumours. Harper Lee deals with prejudice as racism when we are introduced to the character of Tom Robinson.

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Courage in To Kill A Mockingbird

    4 star(s)

    Atticus knows that Tom is innocent and that he must fight for him, since no one else will. Atticus's strong sense of morality and justice motivates him to defend Tom. He wants people in Maycomb to belive that "that boy might go to the chair, but he's not going till the truth's told".

  2. Bullet points on To Kill A Mockingbird.

    * Description of Aunt Alexandra * Jem and Scout receive two air-rifles at Christmas * Description of finch's landing * Description of Francis Hancock * Francis calls Atticus a nigger-lover then Scout hits him * Scout hears Atticus talking to Uncle jack CHAPTER 10: * Description of Atticus * Description

  1. To Kill a Mockingbird Essay

    Instead he withheld his true feelings, thus keeping his dignity intact. "I wish Bob Ewell wouldn't chew tobacco", is all Atticus had to commend on the ordeal. Atticus believed that no one is pure evil; meaning that if you look hard enough, you would find that there is good in every person you meet.

  2. How does Harper Lee use minor characters to explain some of the main concerns ...

    with black people in the book - the majority seem to be welcoming of equality between races. Lee uses the encounter with Lola to teach the reader, alongside Scout and Jem, that black people are also prejudiced against black people and that racism exists on either side of the battle.

  1. Is To Kill A Mockingbird an Optimistic or Pessimistic Novel?

    This point alone is a very pessimistic part of the book as it shows the problems in America during the depression. The way these families live is also atrocious; the families are large, and live chock-a-block in small houses in areas where no one else would build a house- such as on the edge of the dump.

  2. To Kill A MockingbirdInterior Monologue: Mayella Ewell

    I knew he was on to something: the truth. I lost control, all I could think of doing was holler at the courtroom, call them cowards for not convicting Tom. I had refused to answer any more questions after that.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work