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To Kill a Mockingbird in reference to the Scottsboro Trials

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Dewji To Kill a Mockingbird: In Relations to the Scottsboro Trials No other trial in American history creates so much turmoil, trials, appeals, and convictions as the alleged rape of two white women by nine black youths on March 25, 1931 (Linder, par. 1). Over the course of the next two decades the justice of the American judicial system as well as its people would be tested in this case. The nine black youths, or the ?Scottsboro Boys? as they were called, will be made into celebrities as they fight for their freedom. The fate of the nine Scottsboro Boys is on everyone?s mind during the Scottsboro Trials; Harper Lee takes aspects from this trial and illustrates it in her own novel, To Kill a Mockingbird. The beginning of both the Scottsboro Trials and the Tom Robinson case bears a striking resemblance to each other. Mayella Ewell is a lonely girl who has to take care of her seven younger brothers and sisters. She regularly asks Tom Robinson to come and do some work for her. According to Tom it ?Seemed like every time I [he] passed by yonder she?d have some little somethin? for me [him] to do? (Lee 191). However, one day she ?did something that in our society is unspeakable? she tempted a Negro? and thus she must ?destroy the evidence of her offence? (Lee 203, 204). ...read more.


This testimony suggests that Mayella is beaten by someone who led mostly with their left hand and uses their right hand to choke her. Next, when Tom goes up to testify it is made clear that Tom?s left arm is completely useless due to a childhood accident. In his last argument Atticus says ?The state has not produced on iota of medical evidence to the effect that the crime Tom Robinson is charged with ever took place? (Lee 203). Atticus pleads with ?the all-white jury to put aside its prejudices and acquit Robinson, whose only crime has been to feel sorry for a white woman. Yet in face of the defendant?s obvious innocence, the jury returns a guilty verdict? (Salzman 258). During the Scottsboro Trials ?overwhelming medical and other evidence made it clear that the women hadn?t been raped at all? (Moss 39). The evidence supporting the defendants consisted up physical examinations, conflicting testimonies and medical test. The first piece of evidence presented to the court was that Victoria ?was neither crying, bleeding, nor seriously bruised after the alleged gang rape? (Linder, par. 14). Also from the testimony of Dr. R. R. Bridges, the Scottsboro doctor who examined the women less than two of the alleged rape, says that the girls pulse and respiration rate were normal and that the spermatozoa was non-motile or dead (Linder, par. ...read more.


24). Thus to no surprise he lost the re-election when it came. Both Atticus and Horton upheld the justice system in defiance to the racist society surrounding them. Likewise the words of this judge remind us of the address Atticus makes to the jury. Before the trial starts Horton addresses the court ?So far as the law is concerned, it knows neither native nor alien, Jew or Gentile, black or white. This case is not different from any other. We have only our duty to do without fear or favor? (Johnson 32). Atticus calls on the jury in similar words ?But there is one way in this country in which all men are created equal---there is one human institution that makes a pauper the equal of a Rockefeller, the stupid man the equal of and Einstein . . . That institution, gentlemen, is a court? (Lee 205). These two men are pure in heart and intention, their wisdom and actions are beyond their time and will last forever. Harper Lee?s Tom Robinson case adequately represents a fictional form of the Scottsboro Trials. Lee creates fictional characters that are fabricated from important figures during the trials of the Scottsboro Boys. Moreover the aspects and details of both trials directly relate to each other. The Scottsboro Trials opens the eyes to the injustice occurring in the courts and the Tom Robinson case changes literature forever. ...read more.

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