To Kill a Mockingbird Essay Questions/Answers
1847 WordsSep 29th, 20128 Pages
To Kill a Mockingbird Questions
1. Boundaries/Limitations: What is the nature of a boundary/limitation? What are they designed to do? What characters are bound/limited throughout To Kill a Mockingbird and how do they break those boundaries in the novel? Give specific examples to support your thought.
The nature and design of a boundary/limitation is to restrain someone from going anywhere or doing anything. In To Kill a Mockingbird, Jem Finch, Scout Finch, Arthur “Boo” Radley, Dill Harris, Mayella Ewell, Tom Robinson, and Dolphus Raymond all break boundaries. Jem, Scout, and Dill break boundaries when they attempt to touch the Radley House: “Jem stood in thought so long that Dill made a mild concession: ‘I won’t say you ran out on a…show more content…
Tate, he can tell you his name…Hey, Boo.’… He was about to speak when Dr. Reynolds came down the hall. ‘Everybody out,’ He said, as he came in the door. ‘Evenin’, Arthur, didn’t notice you the first time I was here’” (362, 363). When “Boo” Radley gives Scout the blanket, Scout does not notice because she is so interested in the fire and when “Boo” Radley is in the Finch’s house, the people in there do not notice him until Scout points him out. Burris Ewell is another character that is “invisible” to everyone else: “The boy stood up. He was the filthiest human I had ever seen. His neck was dark grey, the backs of his hands were rusty, and his fingernails were black deep into the quick. He peered at Miss Caroline from a fist-sized clean space on his face. No one had noticed him, probably, because Miss Caroline and I had entertained the class most of the morning” (35). Burris is not noticed by the other students because Scout and Miss Caroline are arguing the whole time and because he showed no interest in participating in the class.
3. Identification/Understanding: What are the life-changing experiences that enable us to see Scout and Jem “grow up” during the course of the story? How does their understanding of the world change because of these experiences? Why is it important that they identify and understand the world around them? Jem and Scout “grow up” quite a lot of times in the novel: when they find items in the tree near the Radley House and
As part of the study of To Kill a Mockingbird, you will be writing an essay on one aspect of the novel. You will be given some class time to work on the essay and you will be given specific instruction on essay writing. The final product will be graded for content, organization, expression, mechanics. You will be given additional marks for collecting quotations, preparing an outline and writing a rough draft.
Choose one of the following topics:
1. Examine the use of the mockingbird as a symbol in the novel. What does the mockingbird symbolize? Which three characters can be considered “mockingbirds?”
2. At the end of the novel, Scout thinks that “Jem and I would get grown but there wasn’t much else left for us to learn” (Lee. 1982, p.282). What important lessons have either Scout or Jem learnt from Atticus’ defence of Tom Robinson and the events surrounding the trial?
3. What does the novel have to say about “courage?” Who are the courageous characters in To Kill a Mockingbird, and how do they demonstrate their courage? What is Harper Lee’s message about real courage?
4. Several times Atticus emphasizes the need to consider things from another’s point of view. How does following his advice change the children’s opinions of other people in Maycomb? What is the author’s underlying message about seeing things from another’s viewpoint?
5. As the novel progresses, Scout and Jem come to understand and value Atticus. What events cause this development of the children’s admiration for their father? How does each event contribute to their understanding of Atticus?
6. Examine the theme of prejudice in To Kill a Mockingbird. How is prejudice demonstrated in the story and by whom? What is the author’s underlying message about prejudice?
7. Examine the theme of hypocrisy in the novel. How is hypocrisy demonstrated in the story and by whom? What is the author’s underlying message about hypocrisy?
*Your essay must make specific references to the novel and use direct quotations (with citations) to support your arguments.
*Essay length: 500 words with a minimum of 5 citations
For more great resources, please see my full unit plan for To Kill a Mockingbird.
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