The 1960s to kill a mocking bird
Many people hold To Kill A Mockingbird as one of the most renowned pieces of American literature to be published in the last 100 years. It was published in 1960 and written by a woman named Harper Lee. Lee wrote the book with her family, friends and hometown in mind.
To Kill A Mockingbird is told through the eyes of a girl named Scout. Scout has many friends in town, including Jem, her older brother, and Dill, a neighboring boy who is based on a young Truman Capote. Scout watches as the hero of the novel, a white widower lawyer named Atticus Finch, strives with racial strife and violence in the town of Maycomb, Alabama during the Great Depression.
In the book, a judge has appointed Atticus as the defense attorney to a black man named Tom Robinson. A man named Bob Ewell has accused Tom of raping one of Bob’s family members, a woman named Mayella. Over the course of the trial, it becomes clear that Bob Ewell is lying about this.
However, this does not stop the town of Maycomb from nearly lynching Tom, which Atticus stops them from doing. The town turns against Atticus, Jem and Scout, claiming that they are “ni**er-lovers.” (To Kill A Mockingbird is very controversial, especially as an assigned book for children and teenagers, because it uses the n-word many times. However, it is clear from the context of the book that use of this word is not something that Lee advocates).
The white jury convicts Tom and sends him to jail despite a lack of evidence. Tom tries to escape from jail, but in the process is shot and killed. Meanwhile, Bob Ewell feels that Atticus was trying to belittle him during the trial and harasses him and his family.
The book makes a strong case for the fact that just because someone seems intimidating does not mean that they are objectively dangerous. This is reinforced by a storyline about Scout’s menacing neighbor, “Boo” Radley. Boo is a recluse who is seldom seen in the neighborhood, so many people assume that he is dangerous and violent. However, when Scout finally meets Boo towards the end of the book, she finds him to be a kind, caring man who is far more sensitive and moral than most of the racist citizens of Maycomb.
In addition to the argument the book makes against racism, To Kill A Mockingbird is notable for its sense of humor. Critics have said that the book’s characters seem strongly human and relatable.
To Kill A Mockingbird PDF is available from many websites. One version online runs 285 pages and contains links at the start of the article to the book’s 26 chapters. The PDF includes very few pictures so it is not particularly large and should be easy to download in its entirety.