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Harper Lee's classic, "To Kill a Mockingbird" is about a young girl named Scout Finch who lives in Alabama in the 1930s. Her father is a lawyer who has taken on the case of a black man, Tom Robinson, who is wrongly accused of the rape of a white woman. This is a very controversial case in a very racist town, and throughout the course of the trial, Scout and her brother Jem learn very important life lessons from their father's role in this case. The book speaks strongly about prejudice and racism, and is considered a masterpiece and a classic for the way it deals with these themes through the growth of a young child.
Ultimately, To Kill A Mockingbird is the story of humanity learning to understand each other. As a reader, we see the world through the eyes of all children, who enter this world as the most pure of human beings. The realization of life's hard lessons is taught through Scout and Jem Finch as they watch their father and community struggle with the Depression, racism, and the justice system of the Old South. We see the remnants of the old stereotypes toward blacks, women, and anyone who is considered to be an "outsider" (Boo Radley). It is a great book to teach young people about how NOT to be.
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