I need an important passage from To Kill a Mockingbird chapters 12-14 that relates to theme, symbols or figurative language?

1 Answer | Add Yours

clairewait's profile pic

clairewait | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

As you know, one of the key themes of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird is the subject of race relations, and specifically, how blacks and whites were kept very separate in that time period in the south.  Often, we study the historical oppression of black Americans from the perspective that it was driven by white people only.  However, chapter 12 reveals another attitude that was by no means unique to this story alone.  It happens when Calpurnia brings Scout and Jem to her church.

You ain't got no business bringin' white chillun here--they got their church, we got our'n. (119)

This of course was spoken by Lula, with an air of pride and disgust at the fact that Calpurnia would dare bring the children of her white boss to a church where they did not belong.

Though the novel mainly focuses on the prejudice and superior attitude that existed in white people toward black people, this passage reveals that sometimes the prejudice went the other way.  Lula represents the uncommon but not unheard of attitude that existed in some black Americans, that agreed that black and white should be kept separate.  In a way, Lula's sense of superiority here (unwelcoming to Scout and Jem in church) mimics the superiority of white people that she had likely experienced her entire life.

Sources:

We’ve answered 318,917 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question