What inspired Harper Lee to write To Kill a Mockingbird?

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bmadnick eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Harper Lee has always said that her novel is not an autobiography, but there are many similarities between her childhood and Scout Finch. Lee also had a childhood friendship with Truman Capote, another well-known author. During the summers in Monroeville, the two of them played games much like those of Scout, Jem, and Dill. Authors usually draw from their own experiences to write, and Lee does this as well with her famous novel.kk

Growing up in the South provided Lee with an education in racism. She witnessed the prejudice and injustices inflicted upon Southern blacks, and I'm sure this made enough of an impression on her that she felt the need to write about it. What happens to Tom Robinson is the pivotal event that teaches Scout and Jem difficult life lessons.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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