Negative Stereotyping In Maycomb Essay

962 words - 4 pages

Negative Stereotyping in Maycomb
“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view-until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” (39) This quote from the book To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is falsely used by the people in Maycomb. In the book Boo Radley also known as Arthur Radley is described as the monster of Maycomb. After Tom Robinson, a African American that falsely accused for raping a white women, trail was over people can clearly see that Boo Radley is no monster, but a normal citizen of Maycomb. Another character in "To Kill a Mockingbird" is a man presented as the town "drunk". Dolphus Raymond has to potray something that he is not, because he has a African American girlfriend and children also. Dolphus Raymond acts as if he has a drinking problem so people will understand why he has a African American girlfriend.Throughout the book Harper Lee shows three cases of stereotyping in the town of Maycomb, from using Boo Radley, Tom Robinson, and Dolphus Raymond.
The character Boo Radley, is sterotyped as the monster of Maycomb:
Boo was about six-and-a-half feet tall, judging from his tracks; he dined on squirrels and any cats he could catch, that's why his hands were bloodstained- if you ate an animal raw, you could never wash the blood off. There was a long jagged scar that ran across his face; what teeth he had were yellow and rotten; his eyes popped, and he drooled most of the time. (16)
Jem describes a popular stereotype opionion of Boo Radley, in which everyone in Maycomb believes. This shows that not only did the citizens of Maycomb stereotype Boo as a monster, but the children of Maycomb did also. Another example of how the town of Maycomb stereotyped Boo was that he was an evil guy that wished harmed to others. "In the house lived a malevolent phantom." (10) This stereotype shows that not only did the people of Maycomb think that Boo was a monster looking person, but that he also had a evil heart and wished evil to people. Therefore, since no one sees Boo Radley, it is easy to make accusations and spread rumors about him. He is reclusive, introverted. He hides away from the town, which gives them free reign to make outrageous claims about him.
Furthermore, Harper Lee introduces Tom Robinson into the story when the reader learns that Atticus, the narrotar dad, would be depend Tom in the trial. Tom Robinson is sterotyped because of the color of his skin. Since Tom is not white he doesnt have a chance of winning the trial.
"Atticus, are we going to win it ?" Scout asked Atticus.
"No, honey" anwsered Atticus.
"Then why-" asked Scout in confusion. (101)
This shows the people of Maycomb knew that Tom...

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