Unreliable Narrator In The Scottsboro Boys

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Some English classes teach that first person point of view is not always trustworthy. For example, a story may open with the narrator admitting to being mentally ill, or a more dramatic use of first person delays the revelation until near the story's end. This twist ending forces readers to reconsider their point of view and reliability of the actual experience of the story. In some cases, the narrator's unreliability is never completely revealed, but only hinted at, leaving readers to wonder how much the narrator should be trusted and how the story should be interpreted because of that. Yet, an unreliable narrator can be used to get a point across as well. A story through the mind of an innocent child is unbiased because he/she is experiencing…show more content…
To southern whites, these nine African-American teenagers had inflicted the gravest of sins —rape—on two white girls while riding on a train through northern Alabama in 1931. A group of white boys contacted the police out of spite, who stopped the train. The police raid resulted in the arrest of the nine black teenagers, as well as the discovery of white females Victoria Price and Ruby Bates, who were on the train with men that were not their husbands. Already caused with the distress of a record for past morals violations, Price was quick to toss the blame to the boys, claiming they had "bothered" her. Price then concocted an extravagant story, confirmed hesitantly by her partner, Bates, asserting that the black teenagers had raped them as well as threatened their lives. In nearby Scottsboro, the boys were quickly tried, convicted, and sentenced to death by an all-white jury, as rape was the ultimate crime in the south. The southern press treated the trial as a triumph of legal due process. The Alabama governor of the time had called out the National Guard to defend the courthouse from a lynch mob, which had gathered outside during the trial proceedings. However, the trial had been an absurd event, taking place in an overwhelmingly hostile environment and with legal representation that lacked enthusiasm to defend the boys…show more content…
Most of the towns people accused him and harassed him long before the charged man (Tom Robinson) was convicted. Through the trial, it is revealed that Robinson was not actually guilty, and the prosecutors had made up the story to cover for Mayella, the teenage girl, lusting after a black man. Despite being innocent, Tom Robinson was found guilty of the crime, and was shot seventeen times while trying to escape the jail where he was wrongfully held. In the incident of the Scottboro boys, they were convicted of rape and sentenced to death (though none of them were killed by execution). One of the boys escaped jail, another was shot in the face and suffered permanent brain damage, and others were sentenced to life in jail, despite an appeal deciding some of the boys were innocent. Comparing the two stories side by side, the similarities are evident

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