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I need a different title for To Kill a Mockingbird and explain why it's...

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bby567 | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 31, 2011 at 10:30 AM via web

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I need a different title for To Kill a Mockingbird and explain why it's appropriate. Help?!

I need a different title for To Kill a Mockingbird and explain why it's appropriate. Help?!

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 31, 2011 at 10:56 AM (Answer #2)

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This sounds suspiciously like a homework assignment, and it might be an interesting one if not for the fact that To Kill a Mockingbird is one of the best--and most apt--titles of any American fiction. No title that you or I come up with will match Harper Lee's inspired vision. However...

  • Finches and Mockingbirds.  I couldn't resist including the mockingbird in the title. Lee's symbolic usage of "Finch" for the family name is also deliberately similar to the other songbird.
  • One Shot at Justice.  Atticus' old nickname is used with this one, with a reference to the Robinson trial included.
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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted June 3, 2011 at 8:23 AM (Answer #3)

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You might call it The Education of Scout and Jem since a major theme of this work is the way in which these two kids grow and learn through the events that happen in Maycomb.

You might also call it Pride and Prejudice.  I know that one's taken already, but much of this book is about those two things.  You have pride driving people like Bob Ewell and Aunt Alexandra and you have prejudice (against blacks, against poor people) as a major factor in the events of the book.

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 2) Distinguished Educator

Posted June 4, 2011 at 2:42 AM (Answer #4)

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There is no question that Harper Lee's title is the most apt for her novel. Still, the suggestions of post #1 are excellent. 

Perhaps another suggestion:  Maybe in Maycomb.  Within this small, southern town of Alabama, the chances for a change in attitudes--religious, social, racial--is not too expected, but Atticus Finch certainly tries to effect this growth in his children, his family, his friends, and his fellow townspeople.  

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted June 4, 2011 at 5:51 AM (Answer #5)

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Yes. Sounds like a homework assignment I give. Regardless, here you go.

1) "Walking in Their Skin"- Atticus' favorite saying.

2) "The Bravest Man Who Ever Lived"- As stated by Scout.

3) "Licked Before You Begin"- Atticus.

So there you go. The original came from the text, an alternative should as well. BUt allow me to say, the other posts have amazing answers!!!

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kiwi | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted June 5, 2011 at 12:02 PM (Answer #6)

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There have been some good suggestions already. I would consider something like 'Arthur's Story', as we are given a perspective on prejudice through the emergence of  Arthur 'Boo' Radley.  You could also consider 'Finch's Progress', in a similar vein to 'Pilgrim's Progress'. The Finch family learn much in the course of the novel.

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Michelle Ossa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted June 7, 2011 at 2:36 AM (Answer #7)

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I would call it The Ballad of Atticus Finch for the story's heroic main character and the sacrifice he endured on behalf of justice. Another cool title that I would give To Kill a Mockingbird would be Against All Odds because this is literally what Atticus was doing: Going against everything and anything that has come his way in order to ensure that Tom Robinson receives his due justice.

However, I agree with the previous post in that definitely To Kill a Mockingbird is a perfect title for the novel. It just demonstrates the depth of thought and feeling that Harper Lee infused in her work.

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ms-charleston-yawp | High School Teacher | eNotes Employee

Posted June 11, 2011 at 2:53 AM (Answer #8)

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There are so very many I adore from the above responses, but I thought I would relate this to a recent, fun, and similar discussion question that read "Creatively rename the title of a classic work of literature."  http://www.enotes.com/lit/discuss/creatively-rename-title-classic-work-literatu-94015 My submission for To Kill a Mockingbird (which ironically was the only one I submitted that wasn't humorous) was To Kill a Mockingbird:  Post-War Southern Racism through a Child's Eyes. Why?  Because that is exactly what this most excellent novel is about.  Thanks, Scout, for giving us a new way to look at things!

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e-martin | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted February 17, 2013 at 8:13 PM (Answer #9)

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The book could be called, "Those Who Need Protection". 

One theme of the novel, related to the symbol of mockinbirds, is related to the idea that not everyone is capable of protecting themselves in the ways they need most to be protected. This is true of Atticus, Scout, Boo Radley and Tom Robinson.

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