Title: To Kill a Mockingbird
Author: Harper Lee
Publisher: HarperCollins (October 17, 2006)
Page Count: 336
ISBN #: 0061205699
Publication Date: 1960
One man stands unjustly accused of a horrific crime, and because of the color of his skin the public sees him as guilty, a closed case, but there are a small few who look past prejudices and recognize him for his good character and noble actions.
Harper Lee beautifully portrays the innocence of youth, coming of age in a time of broken morals and twisted values. The rich description and humorous interactions between the children are entrancing, but the unbreakable bond of family is what makes this story so hard to put down.
Narrated by a nine-year-old girl whose father takes the case of Tom Robinson, an unjustly accused man, To Kill a Mockingbird is an important account of what happens to society when unethical values are accepted as a standard, and the uphill battle that follows for the few who have the courage to stand up against the corrupt thinking of a majority. The children struggle to make sense of the injustices happening around them by people they know and trust, but hypocrisy and malicious treatment are hard to stomach.
A few questions that came to mind while reading To Kill a Mockingbird:
History and traditions are passed on from one generation of family members to the next, and aren’t easily forgotten. For people of today who have never known slavery, but it is part of their family’s history, does society take into account the affects of this serious but distant oppression on current generations?
If an entire past society is capable of accepting racism as a standard, and laws are created to support it, is society today also accepting, supporting and justifying marginalization of groups of people that will be recognized as shameful to future generations?
“…before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.”
–Harper Lee To kill a Mockingbird