To Kill a Mockingbird Questions and Answers
by Harper Lee

To Kill a Mockingbird book cover
Start Your Free Trial

In To Kill a Mockingbird, how are Tom Robinson and Boo Radley like mockingbirds? Give reasons besides their innocence.

Expert Answers info

David Morrison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2017

write11,901 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Law and Politics

Besides resembling mockingbirds in their innocence, Tom Robinson and Boo Radley are also like mockingbirds in that they do no harm to anyone. Despite wild rumors and legends saying that Boo once attacked his father with a pair of scissors, there's no evidence to substantiate such a serious allegation. It's fair to conclude, then, that Boo's never done any harm to anyone in his life, just like a mockingbird. That being the case, it's deeply sinful for the people of Maycomb to treat him like a boogie-man or scary monster.

The same applies to Tom. He's entirely innocent of the charges that have been leveled against him. He neither raped nor assaulted Mayella Ewell. In fact, he took pity on her, treating her with kindness and consideration. But according to the warped values shared by most people in Maycomb, this was completely unacceptable behavior; they did not consider it right and proper for someone from a supposedly inferior race to take pity on their racial "superiors." This turns the...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 973 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Gretchen Mussey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2015

write10,323 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Law and Politics

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

lsumner eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2010

write1,183 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and History


check Approved by eNotes Editorial