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What is an example of prejudice in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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cabrath10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 15, 2013 at 7:21 PM via iOS

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What is an example of prejudice in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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litteacher8 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted January 22, 2013 at 9:19 PM (Answer #1)

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There are different kinds of prejudice.  While there is plenty of racism in the book, there is also intolerance of difference in other ways.  For example, people ostracize Boo Radley because he is different.

Boo Radley is the neighborhood myth, but he is a real person.  Boo had a troubled past.  After a rowdy youth and strict upbringing, he seems to have been isolated in his own house for many years.  He has no company or friends, and only timid and clandestine interaction with the Finch children.

After the shame, Boo’s family made him into a ghost, but not likely by chaining him to the bedpost.

Nobody knew what form of intimidation Mr. Radley employed to keep Boo out of sight, …Atticus said … that there were other ways of making people into ghosts. (ch 1)

In the end, Boo turns out to be a shy but brave young man.  Years of prejudice has kept him a mockingbird, innocent yet haunted. 

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jkplunk | High School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 18, 2013 at 4:12 PM (Answer #2)

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There are many examples of prejudice throughout To Kill a Mockingbird.  The most obvious example is the mistreatment of Tom Robinson by most of the citizens in the town of Maycomb.  Another example is the way that the citizens who live in the town of Maycomb view the citizens who are poor and live on the outskirts of town; for example, Mayella Ewell.  The Ewells are looked down on within the hierarchy of the Caucasian citizens.  Even though it becomes obvious that Mayella Ewell's father is to blame for the incident that occurs, Tom Robinson is still the scapegoat due to the fact that he is African American.  Lastly, Boo Radley and the stories that abound about him and his family show Scout how appearance aren't always as they seem.

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jamie7539154 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted January 16, 2013 at 3:14 AM (Answer #3)

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For examples of prejudice, you can consider prejudice (mistreatment)due to race, gender, age, class status, etc.  When you focus on prejudice being larger than just racism, additional examples often become more clear.

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