• 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" is a novel of contrasts. DISCUSS! Refer to in your essay to at least three of characterisation, imagery, structure, symbolism. You may refer to any other appropriate features.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Jason Henry 6DH2 "To Kill a Mockingbird" is a novel of contrasts. DISCUSS! Refer to in your essay to at least three of characterisation, imagery, structure, symbolism. You may refer to any other appropriate features. Harper Lee's tragic and dramatic novel, "To Kill a Mocking Bird", is one of many contrasts. This enlightening novel sees the stamina of one man pushed to the limit when fighting for justice against a prejudice and hypocritical town. These contrasts are illustrated through Lee's successful use of juxtaposition, in many key scenes, narration and most particularly characterisation. Foremost, characterisation is used throughout this prose to clearly demonstrate contrasts, immediately shown through the dehumanising description of Boo Radley within the first chapter, "...his head was like a skull..." This simile initially symbolising the children's fear and fright towards Boo. However, in contrast to this dehumanisation, Boo is re-humanised by Scout when she calls him "Mr. Arthur", thus highlighting the end of the division between Scout and Jem, and Boo. The portrayal of the Ewell family also aids to the contrasts of the novel. ...read more.

Middle

Within this scene Lee uses many contrasting ideas, from the basic fact that they are building a "snowman", but they put "Miss Maudies sunhat..." on it, which "glistened with snow crystals", thus making the snowman seem like a woman, furthermore, the juxtaposition used helps to emphasise the two opposing ideas of hot and cold. This scene with the snowman also, importantly, symbolises the majority smothering the minority. In order t build the snowman they required "five baskets of earth and two baskets of snow...", by building a snowman with a foundation of earth, this clearly illustrates how the black people of Maycomb keep the town supported, and the white people - the "snow" - are just there for the appearance, to make the town acceptable, in the 1930's, without the earth, there is no snowman - without the black people of Maycomb, there is no Maycomb. The marginalisation between black people and white people is further emphasised when the "Finch Negroes" are described as doing hard labour on the Finch property. This almost shocking statement clearly reveals how even the Finch family has slaves working for them, but in contrast to this, Atticus Finch defends Tom Robinson later on in the novel, therefore reinstating their position towards the top of the Maycomb hierarchy. ...read more.

Conclusion

For a black person to be considered inferior to a white person was common. When a white person defends a black person, no matter what the circumstances, they, and any acquaintances, are completely looked down upon by society. The slaves that work on Finches Landing are referred to as "Finch negroes", this almost seems ironic that Atticus will defend a black man, Tom Robinson, yet the Finch family have black men working for them as slaves. The whole ordeal with the trial and a white man defending a black man in Maycomb almost juxtapose each other and is an evident contrast within the social structure of Lee's epic novel. Overall, the excellently manipulated features used by Lee help to add to the understanding of the situation for Scout and many other characters at that particular time in their lives. The many contrasts, demonstrated through the use of narration; juxtaposition and symbolism; and most noticeably characterisation, add to the tension created before the trial of Tom Robinson and help us to get an understanding of the characters. ...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

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

    In this essay I will be exploring Jem and Scout's journey to maturity throughout ...

    5 star(s)

    "Why couldn't I mash him?" I asked "Because they don' bother you" Jem answered...' In the first passage Jem is perceived as being youthful and innocent, not caring what the consequences of his actions will be.

  2. Peer reviewed

    To Kill a Mockingbird Essay

    4 star(s)

    This reflects Atticus' ethics again as it shows he does not judge people by what they wear as he lets his daughter wear what she wants. Finally, Atticus is shown by Harper Lee not be judgemental. Maycomb is a town where people can be judged by their names, "He is a Cunningham" and by their colour.

  1. How effectively does Harper Lee convey her ideas about prejudice in her novel To ...

    We see this when a number of people from Maycomb label Atticus 'nigger-lover' including Francis Hancock who is family, Cecil Jacobs - Scouts classmate, Bob Ewell and Mrs. Dubose when she shouts 'Your father's no better than the niggers and trash he works for!'; these quotes are all related to the Tom Robinson case.

  2. To Kill A Mockingbird Full Summary

    Jem gets concerned that the men outside mean Atticus some harm, but Atticus assures him later that those men are his friends - they're not part of a gang or the Ku Klux Klan, whom Atticus claims is gone and will never come back.

  1. English essay on 'To Kill a Mockingbird'.

    I believe that Atticus is doing right. A few pages on in the novel, the children talk about their father being "feeble" and "he didn't do anything. He worked in an office". They then, from Miss Maudie are told their father can make a person will air tight, that he is the best chequer player in town and he can play a Jew's harp.

  2. To what extent does Harper Lee's Symbolism contribute to the overall effectiveness of To ...

    Because the Radley house is meant to be a horrible and scary place it could symbolise growing up as the children are fascinated by it but scared of it as well. It also represents closed communication between the innocents and the rest of the world.

  1. To Kill A Mockingbird Imagery and Symbolism

    This shows how she is determined to listen to her own conscience and is not pressurised by other people. She also learns that adults aren't perfect and don't always get things right. For example, she starts to get upset when people call her dad a nigger lover; "What did Francis call him a nigger lover?

  2. To Kill A Mocking Bird : Harper Lee - A chapter analysis.

    Scout spends most of chapter ten looking for things that Atticus can "do." She and her brother mistakenly assume that "doing something" means being able to hunt or play football. They don't realize that Atticus is capable of so many things beyond those physical activities and his strengths lie in areas not stereotypically considered manly.

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