Since To Kill a Mockingbird is written by the viewpoint of Scout, is it safe to say that it is written by Scout?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

While the novel is definitely narrated by Scout--both through the eyes of her youth as well as from a future adult perspective--the novel is written by Harper Lee, who most literary critics believe based the character of Scout on herself. Although Scout may have eventually become a writer, just as the young, tomboy Lee became, there is no mention in the narrative that the story has eventually evolved into a novel. For example, it is not quite the same as in the teen novel The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton, where the narrator, Ponyboy Curtis, eventually puts his story on paper as an assignment for his English teacher. The stories within TKAM are merely the reminiscences of Scout, told almost as if she is retelling the tales to her children sometime in the future.

alisonew | Student

The novel is written as a first person narrative, that is, it is a story recounted by one character – Scout.  This does not mean that Scout has written the novel.  Harper Lee writes the novel, Scout is the narrator.  However, Scout is very much an outward looking narrator– she tells the story through recounting events and others’ reactions to them.  She does not so much look inside herself but looks outwards – she is a story teller. You see events through Scout’s eyes, from a point in the future looking back on what had happened.  Harper Lee, the novelist, tells the story, writes the story through a first person narrator – Scout.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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