How Does Lee Present Injustice In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Harper Lee’s celebrated novel To Kill a Mockingbird is a fictional tale of injustice and prejudice, however, these themes can be found throughout America’s history. From slavery to Jim Crow to housing policy, blacks in America have historically been discriminated against. Giving some sort of compensation to African Americans for these injustices, such as Tom Robinson’s trial, is a proposal that has been debated since slavery, and one that remains highly controversial to this day. In his article in The Atlantic, Ta-Nehisi Coates outlines the case for reparations. In To Kill a Mockingbird, racism is in full swing. There is a separate church and a separate courtroom viewing area just for blacks. In addition to this public segregation, nearly all the white people in Maycomb, save Atticus, openly voice their racist opinions. People like Bob Ewell, Mrs. Dubose, and Aunt Alexandra use racial slurs and speak badly of blacks. Even Scout uses them until Atticus tells her not to because it is “common.” They even try to hurt other whites who try to help blacks, like Atticus. Above all, an innocent black man is being put on a trial for something he didn’t do, purely because he is black. It may be fiction, but a lot of the things that happened in Maycomb actually happened in 1930s South: the Jim Crow laws were in effect, blacks were…show more content…
Coates argues for reparations, citing these exploitations as a good reason for recompense. He mentions that “the past two decades have witnessed a rollback of the progressive legislation of the 1960s” by the Supreme Court. This can be related to how the law worked against blacks in the past, such as in Tom Robinson’s case. He also talks about lack of proper education and substandard housing for blacks, problems that just appeared on a larger scale in To Kill a Mockingbird: only 4 people at Calpurnia’s church knew how to read, and the blacks in Maycomb lived by the
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