Why did Jefferson have to die for something he didn't do and would you get blamed for something you didn't do?

Expert Answers
sullymonster eNotes educator| Certified Educator
I can give you guidance on the first part of this question, but the second part you'll have to consider for yourself. The theme of this story is prejudice and injustice. Jefferson is discriminated against in a number of instances because of both his color and his lack of education. The attorney's arguments in court painted him as subhuman, less than others, too stupid to be put to death. Jefferson's journey isn't a journey to find justice, however. His journey, and the journey of the story, is to defy prejudice and to grow to be a man. He is educated, he learns more of the world and of religion, he learns how to express his own feelings. That education allows him to accept what is happening to him. For the story to work, Jefferson has to die and die proud. Readers can then see the importance of education and yet still understand the injustice of prejudice that causes an innocent man to die. Jefferson is representing a larger idea. Would you die if it meant standing up for something you believe in?
Read the study guide:
A Lesson before Dying

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question