Hello, sophomores. Below are the SEVEN options from which you may select for this writing assignment. Your writing must be at least 300 words. All work is due by Wednesday, May 1, at 8 PM. Please do not submit late work.
Be sure you submit your work here ONLY AFTER you have read each sentence aloud to ensure clarity. Work that you did not proofread carefully will not be counted or posted here. Let me know if you have a question about this.
REMEMBER: For example… Because… Claim Support Interpret… For each claim you make, you must use strong supporting details. Organize your work into paragraphs. Write well! Think hard! Be original! DEEP down to the bottom of the iceberg…
ALSO, you are assigned to write a comment to at least one other student about what he/she has written. Your comment is due by Thursday, May 2, at 9 PM.
1) Explain the connection between Tom Robinson and the title of the novel. Consider two different, specific connections using strong details as you explain your interpretation.
2) At the end of Chapter 23, Jem explains to Scout why he believes Boo stays inside. Jem is now beginning to show a great deal of maturity and insight. What are the two most significant lessons Jem has learned in the novel? Provide strong, specific details to support your two claims. Go deep with your interpretation.
3) To what extent is Mayella Ewell a mockingbird? To what extent is she a bluejay? Provide specific details as you explain your interpretation.
4) In Chapter 19, Scout tells Dill that Atticus is “the same in the courtroom as he is on the public streets.” What are two specific character traits that Atticus displays from Chapter 19 to the end of the novel? Provide specific details as you explain your interpretation.
5) Mrs. Dubose is prominent in Chapter 11 and then leaves the story when she dies. Explain two important connections between her story and the events in Part Two of the novel. Provide specific details as you explain your interpretation.
6) Which character learns the most significant lesson in this novel? What is the lesson and what are the specific circumstances surrounding it? Why does this lesson matter?
7) Who or what poses the greatest danger in the novel—and to whom? Provide specific details as you explain your interpretation.
85 Responses to To Kill a Mockingbird assignment options Comments (RSS)
Mayella Ewell may portrayed herself as a blue jay throughout the trial during “To Kill a Mockingbird.” But that doesn’t mean that’s the only side that Mayella posseses, and it doesn’t mean that Mayella’s blue jay streak is what dominates the majority of her being.
The irony behind Mayella being labeled a blue jay is that, Tom Robinson, the person she manipulates to match the criteria of being a blue jay is the one to portray Mayella as a mockingbird. Robinson does this by telling the jury that Mayella seemed to try the most out of all the Ewells and that he felt sorry for her. This statement to be argued that Mayella is a mocking bird but is simply overpowered by blue jays meaning that any good Mayella seems to project is soon overshadowed by a dark cloud that has been developed by the blue jays in her life; these mainly her father and the stigma attached to the Ewell name. The main aspect of Mayella’s mockingbird spirit being overpowered by a blue jay is in court is when Atticus is attempting Mayella to simply spit out the truth and that her father is a raging alcoholic who becomes physical when intoxicated. During this time it’s painfully obvious Mayella wants to come clean but is petrified by the repercussions that will follow if she does; this is all hit home as she’s barely able to nod her head to agree with Atticus when Bob Ewell stiffens in his seat when their family life is being discussed. Yet again Mayella is silenced by her overbearing brute of a father. However, this isn’t the only time Mayella’s inner mockingbird protruded through. Though this time it’s shown by Tom Robinson, Robinson shows this when he talks about Mayella saving seven nickels for her younger siblings to allow them to go into town and get ice creams. This took Mayella an entire year and goes to show that at heart Mayella is capable of being a compassionate well rounded individual.
Unfortunately, Mayella has done her fair share of ungodly deeds. The main one “To Kill a Mockingbird” focuses on is the fact Mayella allows the jury to falsely accuse Tom Robinson of sexual abuse even though it’s merely a cover up for what Bob Ewell did to Mayella for attempting to become intimate with an African American. This in itself is the definition of a blue jay, taking advantage of someone who wouldn’t dream of taking advantage of anyone. However, this goes to show that Mayella has an enormous amount of love to give and simply no one to give it too properly. Essentially, this all boils down to the question is Mayella really a blue jay or is she a mockingbird whose mouth is being kept tied down by surrounding blue jays?
Hi, Crystal. Good job! You’ve considered several important details in your writing. I especially like your word choices to describe Mayella; indeed, she is “petrified” and “silenced” at various points. You also point out an important irony. Take note that the jury does not “falsely accuse” Tom. Mayella does this. The jury convicts Tom based on her false testimony.
You note that Mayella shows compassion in saving the seven nickels over such a long period of time. Is it possible, however, that her action is not inspired by compassion, but rather by a far more sinister motivation? What ultimately motivates Mayella more than anything else?
Keep up the good thinking. I hope you get to read additional perspectives on this same question; that’s one of the best parts about the blog! Be sure to check back, and don’t forget to write a comment!
I really liked how you wrote about Mayella’s family making her into a blue jay while she is the closest to a mockingbird out of all of them. Your answer made me change my view of Mayella. On the outside, she is seen as a blue jay because of some of her actions and family name, but on the inside, she is a mockingbird who isn’t allowed to show her real self.
I think what poses the greatest danger in the novel are lies. Many people think that Boo Radley is what poses the greatest danger to everyone in Maycomb only because they don’t know what he is going to do next or when he is going to come out. To me, he is not danger but a mystery. Lies pose the greatest danger to the person who is being lied to. One example of this from the novel is when Scout, Jem, and Dill all lie to Atticus and tell him that they are not playing role play as the Radley’s. They are lying to Atticus because they know that they will get in trouble if he finds out that they are pretending to be Boo. This is putting Atticus in danger because he doesn’t know that his children have a slight obsession with Boo Radley and he doesn’t want them to get hurt or have anything happen to them.
Another major lie that happens in the novel is when Atticus keeps the Tom Robinson from his children for a very long time and is not telling them what is going on. This is putting Jem and Scout in danger because they are walking around their own town and people are saying mean things about their father. When they hear mean things being said about their father such as, “Your father’s no better than the niggers and trash he works for!”, it makes them want to stand up for him, and they at first stand up for him (135). After Mrs. Dubose said this, Jem was so angry that he cut off all the tops of her camellia bushes. This shows Jem standing up for his father because he thinks Atticus is right.
Lastly, one more lie that poses danger is when Bob Ewell, Mayella Ewell, and Mr. Heck Tate make up the story about Tom Robinson raping and beating Mayella when it is pretty obvious that it was Bob Ewell that did it to his own daughter. This lie is not only hurting one person, but its hurting many. However, the major person it is hurting is Tom Robinson because he is being blamed for something that he didn’t even do. They are only going after him because they feel he is a weak target that they can win against just because he is black. Mr. Tate is a police officer and police officers are the major people who shouldn’t lie, especially to the judge. All of them lying definitely made everyone in Maycomb question the truth in everyone because no one can really be trusted.
I liked how you brought up the lie about when Atticus keeps the Tom Robinson trial a secret from the kids.This made me really think whether this is a good or bad thing. I do agree that it was harsh for the kids to bear the names and things the town was saying about Tom, however, I also think that this wasn’t just a bad thing just that Atticus was just protecting his children from the hurtful words. You are absolutely correct that lies aren’t good or fair but also in some cases it is used to protect the ones you love.
Overall, I think this was a really good essay and you made a great point about lies. You also made me see the lying is also a very strong motif in the story.
I really like how you said “the major person it is hurting is Tom Robinson because he is being blamed for something that he didn’t even do.” I thought this particular sentence was intresting because it not only had to do with the idea of lies, but also had to do with the idea of prejudice. I really liked your essay and how very thought out it was.
I felt that you did a great job of claiming your position, supporting with important details from the novel, and going deep into interpretation. For example, I liked how you included the part about how Atticus lies to the children about the court case, leading Jem to act out in defense of his father. I never realized how important lies were to the novel until now looking back at your supporting evidence. Overall, I think this was a fantastic response!
Emma, I really like how you picked a concept rather than simply a person in your response. You’ve selected three interesting examples to support your claim. In your third one, you call Tom a “weak target,” which is a clever interpretation. In many respects, he is quite strong, but the forces and people who oppose him, unfortunately, are far stronger. In many respects, lies really are what cause his his downfall and ultimate terrible death. Nice work, once again, Emma.
I think that lies are also a very prominent danger in the story. You were able to support your claim very nicely and with several examples. Nice job :)
Hi, Emma. I really like how you extended the clever idea you shared today in class into this detailed response. Good job! You make an interesting claim about how Atticus places his children in danger before the trial. Does he do so unintentionally? Is he confident that the children will be able to handle the trial without being placed in harm’s way? You’re really making me think about this.
Your last sentence is also interesting. It encapsulates the novel to an extent. Many people in Maycomb question what they are told, while others fall for rumors and fear tactics. Do you think your statement could apply to any people or communities in real life?
Keep up the good thinking!
Scout’s defense about Atticus being “the same in the courtroom as he is on the public street” is true because his character traits are consistent throughout the whole novel. At the beginning of the novel, it was obvious that Atticus is arguably the wisest person that will be shown in this book. Even at the end, he is still arguably the wisest person. In the courtroom, he shows how wise he is when he is asking Mayella and Bob Ewell about the night of the incident. His questions show that he already knows what happened, he’s just waiting for them to tell the truth. He speaks in a way that makes it seem like he isn’t pushing them to get the truth out because he already knows it. Also, Atticus always acts mature and classy. When he talks to Mayella, he calls her Miss Mayella or Ma’am. In the time period that he is from, it was appropriate and respectful to call a lady or woman that. When he is out on the public street, he is also respectful, even to people who don’t deserve it. For example, when Bob Ewell spit on him, he just stood there and waited, not fighting back or calling him names. Also, when Ms. Dubose made Atticus look bad in front of his children, he insisted that Scout and Jem ignore what she said and still act right to her. He still spoke to her and about her respectfully when she did not towards him. One other way that Atticus was the same in court and in public was that wherever he went, he acted fair and understanding. In court, when Mayella was crying and the judge told her to stop, Atticus said that she can because he understands that what she went through is hard on her. Even to Bob Ewell, he was understanding and fair to. Atticus let Bob explain what he saw and he believes what happens all the while he knew he was lying and was guilty. At home, Atticus is very understanding towards his children and anyone he comes across, which is also one reason he is so wise. He understands why people act the way they do, including Ms. Dubose’s hatred toward others and Jem’s mood changes. This makes him very fair towards anyone he encounters. Scout told Uncle Jack that you have to be fair with children, like Atticus. Atticus listens to both of Scout’s and Jem’s side of the story and then thinks about what happened. He lets each person tell their part, which is exactly what he does in court.
I think your response is well thought out and really drives the fact home that Atticus has a quiet confidence that allows him to share his wisdom with people even when the situation calls for Atticus to retaliate violently. I also enjoyed how you back up your claim with specific details to show how Atticus truly treats everyone kindly because he hopes that everyone will one day treat people the way he does, the greatest wisdom Atticus seems to give throughout the novel. This in itself goes to prove your point that Atticus is the wisest in “To Kill a Mockingbird”.
Christina, you support your claim about Atticus with strong, developed examples. This is great to see. (Don’t forget that paragraph structure is also important.) You make it clear that you find Atticus to be respectful and understanding toward each person with whom he interacts. He really is a role model in this sense, not only to his children and others within the novel, but also to all of us who read the novel. You also write that Atticus is a deliberate thinker, which is apparent in many scenes. He does not rush to judgment, preferring instead to accumulate information and listen to the involved parties before saying what is on his mind. Keep up your good work with supporting details. I imagine you have even more to say on the topics you introduce here!
In Chapter 10, Miss Maudie says, “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” This gives the book its title. But it is also very applicable to Tom Robinson. According to his testimony and the shouts of Link Deas, Tom is a mockingbird, helping people when they need help and making music for the people around him. He helps Mayella and feels bad for her, even though she’s a white woman and many black people at the time hated white folks. But he did chores for her without ever accepting a nickel because of how poor he knew her to be. He worked hard for his family even though he was a cripple and his boss is very fond of him. To everyone around him, Tom is a master music maker. He never causes trouble, save for one incident resulting in a misdemeanor. Overall though, Tom was just a mockingbird on a windowsill, until a shooter came along.
In this case, Bob Ewell is the most prominent shooter, as he is the one who reports Tom as Mayella’s rapist. However, in a way, many of the people in town contributed to it by sticking with Bob’s side of it, even though many could see during the trial that it was most likely all false testimony. Heck Tate gave false witness on the stand by saying that he had seen her injuries soon after it happens, even though he knows he himself did it. Mr. Gilmer did it by being extremely biased in his questioning, not even fully asking Tom about what really happened. Even Mayella is responsible in a way, because she had the power to stop and tell the truth about what happened, or at least say that Tom was innocent, but she went ahead and blamed him anyway, even after all he had done for her. In a way, she’s the most responsible, because Tom was nicer to her than anyone else has ever been, and she’s now allowed him to go die unnecessarily.
The title ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ really means that it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird, but not one person is always solely guilty of it, and many people killed Tom Robinson, this book’s mockingbird.
I really like the way you describe the actions Tom Robinson makes. For example, “master music maker”. That was my favorite description and then you finished that paragraph off with great imagery “Tom was just a mockingbird on a windowsill, until a shooter came along”. Very true, he meant no harm yet “the shooter”, Mr. Ewell, continued to attack him.
I also enjoyed reading from your perspective and seeing your interpretation of the idea. You gave everyone fault for what was happening when I honestly only pointed fingers at Mr. Ewell and Mayella but you contributed everyone into it. You helped me get a different view and understand more especially in the last sentence when you said Tom is the book’s mockingbird.
Hi, Cristina. You offer good insights about Tom’s personal character and how he reaches his ultimate fate. I wonder whether you find Tom to be at all naive in choosing to assist Mayella in her home. Lee depicts him as a sensible, reflective person, so perhaps we can imagine that such a person would know the risks involved for a black man to enter the Ewells’ property, nevermind their home. What do you think specifically motivates Tom? Do we know enough about him to form such an interpretation?
You make good points about Bob, Gilmer, and Mayella. Keep up the good thinking.
WRITTEN BY ZOEY C.:
4) At the end of chapter 19 Scout tells Dill that Atticus is the same in the courtroom as he is on the public streets. Scout says this to Dill after Mr. Gilmer cross examined Tom Robinson in court. Dill was asking Scout why Mr. Gilmer was so mean to Tom and why Atticus wasn’t mean like that to Mayella. Scout then says the line explaining to Dill that Atticus acts the same everywhere he is, even though he is doing business he still acts the nice man he is. This proves that Atticus is just a nice all rounded person, and is polite to someone even though they are maybe going against him, for example how he is still polite to Mayella in court when she is fighting his client, Tom. Another example of Atticus showing his kind personality was after Jem broke Ms. Dubose’s camellias. Even though Jem did go and read to Ms. Dubose for a few hours every day for a month, Atticus told Jem if he didn’t go he would have sent Jem to her anyways. What makes Atticus caring and polite is everyday Ms. Dubose would make negative and very mean comments about him to his children, but instead of confronting her or holding her comments against her, he uses the energy to help her and make her happy. Atticus knows that Ms. Dubose has problems with morphine so he cares to help her get better instead of just leaving her with no help because of her mean comments toward Atticus.
Also a trait related to caring that Atticus holds was thinking of others before himself. He does that many times throughout the book but a event that was big on the trait was the whole trial. Around May comb everyone gave the Finch’s a hard time because Atticus was going to defend a black man in court. Everyone in town thought this was a horrible idea and the kids at school would make fun of Jem and Scout for having a “nigger lovin father.” Even though Atticus knows that fighting for Tom will cause trouble for him he still defends Tom because he knows he is helping someone out who really needs the support. Atticus put his life/ reputation in May comb to help out a man who’s last hope is Atticus. Here Atticus thinks about Tom’s consequences before his himself.
By the end of the book Atticus’s caring/ trustworthy relationship changes. At the when Bob Ewell dies because he trips on a rock and stabs himself with a knife, Atticus lies to Sheriff Tate and says Jem tripped him, not the rock. Atticus says this to Tate to make it seem like his son is tougher than everyone thinks, but really Attiucs is lying to Tate. If you told me while I was reading the beginning of the book that Atticus lies to Tate I wouldn’t have believed you. Atticus goes from the guy everyone trustiest and thought was the kindest man in May comb to lying about a death.
Hi, Zoey. It’s interesting to see that your impression of Atticus has been reinforced and even somewhat changed over time. While there are several dimensions to Atticus, certain traits in him remain consistent despite the varied situations in which he appears. You do an especially good job here explaining how Atticus acts with Mrs. Dubose. He maintains his composure to help his children learn a few important lessons.
I want you to re-consider your interpretation of how Bob Ewell dies, and the role Atticus plays in explaining this. Indeed, Atticus’s positive traits are apparent here, but perhaps not in the way you presently think. We’ll discuss this in class. Keep up the good thinking!
I chose to answer number 6, which character learns the most significant lesson in this novel, what is the lesson and what are the specific circumstances surrounding it, and why does this lesson matter?
Throughout the novel, each character learns their own lesson. I think the character that learns the most significant lesson in the novel is Scout. Atticus is the most influential and the wisest character in the novel that provides Scout with the most lessons. Scout learns the most because she is young and can’t keep to her own business. I think the most significant lesson that Scout learns is the act of being prejudice. She learns this lesson in chapter 3 although it carries through to the end of the novel. In chapter 3, Scout first encounters Walter Cunningham’s strange action of putting syrup on his vegetables. Scout unknowingly makes a rude remark that gets Calpurnia frustrated. Although Calpurnia teaches Scout that everyone is different, I don’t think Scout understood the concept until Atticus talked it through with her later in the chapter. Scout also encounters Miss Caroline’s teaching and does not have a good first impression with her. Later that night Atticus teaches Scout that you have to put yourself in another person’s perspective; you have to climb into a person’s skin and walk around in it. This also is the same lesson of not judging a book by its cover. Prejudice is one of the top three motifs I would pick for this novel. Scout concludes her first impressions were wrong. Scout uses this lesson to get past the top of the iceberg and swim below when trying to understand a situation. For example, Boo Radley, the whole town thought the Radley’s were the reasoning behind all bad things. Scout didn’t follow through with that rumor. She uncovered and discovered some of the truth which helped save the reputation of the Radley’s. After communication with Boo, she was able to see the soft side of them. They weren’t exactly who everyone thought they were, they were the kind who kept to themselves. Another example is Mr. Raymond, who purposely portrays himself as a drunken man because he hangs out with black people but Scout learns he’s not really what he looks like. The novel wouldn’t be the same without the lesson of going below the iceberg because it helps Scout look past rumors to find the truth. This is probably my favorite lesson in the story as well because it’s something we as people have to think about in reality too. Most of us are prejudice even if we don’t want to be. It’s the little things like looking at the clothes someone wears and labeling them. I think the idea of being prejudice came up so many times because the lesson was just as important for Scout to understand as it was for the reader to understand.
I liked how you included several characters and how Scout’s first imperssions of them were wrong! Don’t you think every character in the novel has had some sorta a prejudice towards them. I also liked how you included the fact that Scout’s lesson was also a prominate motif in the story.
Also since we know this novel was written by “Scout” at an older age I think she may not have fully understood the lessons that came out of some of the experiences she described in the book. But now that she’s older she can look back and see how each situation influenced her idea of being prejudice.
Great work going deep!
Emma, you do a nice job here with the motif of prejudice to explain how Scout learns several meaningful lessons. Indeed, she does come to understand, as you’ve written, that her first impressions are typically wrong, whether with Walter, Boo, or Mr. Raymond. I’m glad that this last example made such a positive impression on you. I admit that I really like this part of the novel, too!
You show a good understanding of the concept of motifs in your response. Yes, we would still have the same novel in most respects if the Dolphus Raymond story were removed, but it serves to reinforce prominent motifs, and thus enriches the story in important ways.
1. “Prejudiced” is an adjective; “prejudice” is a noun.
2. Remember to use paragraphs to organize your ideas.)
Keep up the great, deep thinking!
Mayella Ewell can be considered both a mocking bird and a blue jay. At the beginning of the trial she seems to be a mockingbird in the eyes of crowd and jurors but by the end she becomes a blue jay. Although she is neither a true mockingbird nor a true blue jay.
Mayella Ewell testifies that Tom Robinson “took advantage” of her but after the trial we learn it was Mayella’s father, Bob Ewell, who roughed her up. Instead of telling the court the truth about what happened back in November she continues to lie. What makes her a blue jay is she knows Tom Robinson’s fate is in her hands and that he could potentially be sentenced to death but she continually lies. Even though the jury would most likely convict Tom even if she told the truth she is responsible for him being wrongly convicted.
Mayella does some things that others may never think of doing or think are morally wrong but that does not make her a bad person. What makes Mayella a mockingbird is she knows what she is doing is wrong and she still has a conscious. In the courtroom when she answers Atticus’s questions she gives very short, quick answers. When Atticus asks Mayella if her father, Bob Ewell, is the one that beat her up she becomes nervous and her father sits up straight in his seat. I interpreted this as a sign of intimidation. Since Mr. Ewell is the one who hurt Mayella he wants her to keep quiet so he doesn’t get arrested. He is the blue jay in this particular situation not Mayella. Mayella only lies because she’s afraid of what her father will do to her. If I was in her situation I would do the same thing to save myself. She does not lie to hurt Tom Robinson, she lies to protect herself. Who knows what Mr. Ewell is capable of?
Mayella may be a blue jay in the children’s eyes but she continues to be a mockingbird in the eyes of Tom Robinson. Tom says that she was always nice to him and wouldn’t hurt a fly. He also says she did more work than the rest of the Ewells and he felt bad for her. Mayella was just stuck being a Ewell.
Is Mayella truly a blue jay or is she just a mockingbird who is being forced into being one? People who make mistakes are bad people
I really liked this answer! You made a lot of very valid and good points! I agree with you that Mayella is both a bluejay and a mocking bird! The only time we read about Mayella was during the trial chapters! In your answer you pointed out all of the major parts that make us decide what Mayella is like and whether or not she can be trusted or if she can’t and in most cases she can’t. Another thing that I feel makes her a bluejay is that she didn’t tell the jury that it was the first time Tom had been inside the fence. I feel like she should have told the jury that. This was a really good answer good job!
I really like your second to last concluding sentence, it made me think about the trial all over again. Although I do disagree that the jurors look at Mayella as a blue jay. I think the jury has no firm answer on who is telling the exact truth and decide to go with the side that will create less controversy. I’m sure they do question which she is but can’t pin-point exactly which one just as we can’t. I like how you added small little details that showed you completely understood the book. You claims were on-point and you interpreted well.
Julia, you offer a great deal of understanding toward Mayella, which shows your own capacity for emapthy is strong. It’s interesting to see that you can support both of your claims about Mayella using clear evidence. What I find especially interesting is your interpretation that, even during the trial, Tom continues to see Mayella as a mockingbird rather than a blue jay. Despite her accusations against him, he maintains his own empathy toward her. To what extent do you think Tom speaks of such empathy in an effort to protect himself on the witness stand? Do we have any indication that Tom is angry at her?
Your question at the end of your response is interesting and worth pursuing. I’m sure how you meant to continue with your last line. Take a close look.
Keep up the good thinking!
To an extent, Mayella Ewell is both a mockingbird and a blue jay. Mockingbirds are innocent creatures that do nothing wrong and, to an extent, help others while blue jays are hurtful birds that just annoy others without regard to whether it’s right or wrong. Throughout the trial she appears to be a mockingbird. The story that Tom Robinson raped her makes her seem innocent, like a mockingbird, and a victim. However, we realize that she is lying because of her inconsistent tale and the fact that she had a bruise on her left eye. Tom couldn’t of beat her with his mangled left had. This pushes Mayella more towards the blue jay side because she is accusing an innocent man of something he never did. Tom never raped her and in fact Mayella was fond of him, asking him to do little chores around the house just to be with him. She covers up the fact that her dad beat her so that she wouldn’t lose him. This makes her more of a mockingbird because even though she was accusing Tom, who was innocent, she was doing it out of love for her dad. Mockingbirds sing for the amusement of others and to an extent do it because there helping others. Either there songs cheers someone’s day up or just keep people uplifted. Mayella lied to protect her father and to an extent helped him since he would have gone to jail for the abuse. As you can see Mayella is both a mockingbird and a blue jay, however, she isn’t just one. She lies for a loyal and innocent reason however in the process is hurting an innocent mockingbird. Mayella can’t just be placed on one side but more in the middle because her actions represent a blue jay but the reasons are more because she is mockingbird.
Hi, Conor. I like how you are seeing multiple sides of this question and considering the pieces of evidence to form your interpretation. Mayella is not a simple character, so it’s important to consider how she behaves in different contexts. Take some time to reconsider your stance that Mayella lies out of loyalty and innocence. We can infer that her father is indeed the one who beats Mayella, causing her injuries. Is it loyalty to her father or fear of him that keeps her silent about the truth? Also, in what way(s) is she innocent? Be sure you can fully support your claims using strong evidence.
Hi Conor, I really like your work here. I like that you explain the difference between mockingbirds and bluejays to give background at the beginning of the first paragraph. This sets the scene for when you provide deeper support for your opinions. I also like that you provided your personal interpretation of Mayella’s testimony, because I had not considered a point of view in that perspective. Good work!
Conor, your response had many fantastic details! I liked how you explained how Mayella is an innocent person and lies for a loyal reason. I thought it was great that you included the details of Atticus confusing Mayella and having her create an inconsistent tail.
The only flaw I noticed was that you did not elaborate upon Bobby Ewell and his significance to the trial.
Tom Robinson Is directly related to the title because of the prejudice in the story. Since the title is called,”To Kill a Mockingbird,” this phrase is present I the story. Miss Maudie explains what this means when Scout asks. She says, “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” After reading about the trial I saw that Tom is a mockingbird for sure.
The first reason why Tom is a mockingbird is based on Miss Maudie’s explanation. She says that all they do is sing for us. In a way, Tom and his race do the same for the white people. Despite what horrible assumptions and things the white people say about them, they try whatever to be noticed and seen that they aren’t any of those things. They want to accepted and respected just as the mockingbirds want to be noticed and cherished.
Another reason why Tom directly relates to the title is because of the trial. After the decision made by the jury that Tom is declared guilty, a tragedy happened. Tom was going to serve his life in jail, innocent. Because of this decision, Tom went crazy and got himself killed in the end. In the story, Jem would be the one killing mockingbirds if he didn’t know. This is like the incident with Tom. The jury put an innocent man in jail know the truth only because they were racist. This decision caused an innocent good man to get killed. Just like it is a sin to kill a mockingbird, it is also a “sin” to punish and innocent man. The mockingbird has done no harm and neither did Tom.
Just like the mockingbird sings it’s heart out for us, so does Tom, pleading the truth to be saved, to be accepted, not be judged by color or race, and to stand up for his people. Although people may think the title has nothing to do with the title, they are wrong. Going deep into the story and you can see that it shows a very important lesson through the characters and life.
I like how you connected all of your ideas to the story and went deep with each thought you had. You did good with including quotes and specific examples from the novel. Also, I like the way you connected Tom to being a mocking bird. Overall, you did a great job with your post!
Hi, Sarah. You have several ideas about Tom to support your claim that he is a symbolic mockingbird. You also have a good point concerning how Tom is unjustly punished. Take note, however, that it appears that you did not proofread your work as well as I know you could; read EACH sentence aloud to ensure clarity. I’m not sure what you mean where you mention Jem and “if he didn’t know.”
Do you think that Harper Lee intends for Tom Robinson to represent all black people? You write about “Tom and his race,” but perhaps Lee intends for us to see Tom as an individual rather than as a representative.
Why do you think the jury finds Tom guilty? I’d like to see you explore the ideas that you introduce in greater depth. You’re a very strong thinker!
The character that learns the most significant lessons in the novel is Scout Finch. Atticus influences Scout through mostly all of his actions. For example, Atticus influences Scout is when he shoots the mad dog. Scout says this is the only time he has pulled out his rifle that she has ever seen. Throughout the novel, Atticus teaches Scout that talents should be used for the good of others. In the novel Scout also learns that you should not hate people for going or believing in the same thing. Scout learns this when she goes to Calpurnia’s church when Atticus is away on the trail.
When the Finch children got BB guns, Atticus taught them to respect nature. That they can shoot all the blue jays they want, but not to kill the mockingbirds. “Atticus said to Jem one day, “I’d rather you shot at tin cans in the backyard, but I know you’ll go after birds. Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” That was the only time I ever heard Atticus say it was a sin to do something, and I asked Miss Maudie about it. “Your father’s right,” she said. “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing except make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corn cribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”
Although Scout is a tomboy, she realizes that being a lady has value. Aunt Alexandra goes back to the game after hearing of Tom Robinson’s death. Scout then states “After all, if Aunty could be a lady at a time like this, so could I” Atticus also taught not just Scout but Jem too, that they should value their education and very thing that they have. Atticus taught both of his children to read and write. This would lead them to be open minded, smart, honest adults. He had patience with them and guided them to become good honest adults. It showed his children to not be prejudice. This lesson matter because Atticus teaches his children that It does not matter who you are, your skin color or race, that we are all equal. Atticus also teaches his children this by being Tom Robinson’s client for his trail. Atticus also does this to show his children to always do the right thing. He also taught Scout and also Jem courage. Atticus stood up to others when he could have given in very easily.
I really liked your post. I especially like the way you connected all the little stories with Atticus and Scout and showed how they are all related and that there was an overarchign lesson to learn in each of them.
But you also were able to show lessons Scout learned from others on there as well. Probably the most fascinating one was Aunt Alexandra. The whole “being a lady thing” doesn’t seem like much of a lesson, especially coming from a person made out to be an antagonist. But you explained it in a way that made it not only make sense but feel very plausible.
Awesome job girl!
3) Atticus tells Scout and Jem it is a sin to kill a mockingbird and this is because all they do is “ sing their hearts out for us.” Mocking birds don’t cause burdens for others unlike blue jays who “eat up people’s gardens” and are aggressive. Mayella Ewell would not be just one, she’s apart of both and these are the reasons:
First, it is quite obvious why she would be a blue jay. During the trial it seems her statements are untrue because she is either unsure or keeps changing her story. She rarely gave straight answers and she would always look at her father for approvement. Atticus claimed Mayella only said Tom raped her to get Tom out of her life. As Tom described it Mayella kissed him and was the aggressor and Bob Ewell, her dad, saw through the window. It seems Mayella accused Tom of raping her so she wouldn’t have to deal with the hatred from her dad and the shame from others. She wanted an African American, which at this time period was unlikely and “wrong.” She blamed Tom to get the burden off her back even when she knew he could be sentenced to death.
To understand why Mayella Ewell is a mockingbird, you will have to dig much deeper. As said by Tom during the trial, Bob said “ ill kill you ya god damn whore” after seeing Mayella trying to get with him. Mayella most likely got scared to death because she was threatened with her life. It was not right for her to accuse Tom of raping her but it is understandable why she did it. Of course, Bob has no excuse for saying that to his daughter. It just shows the conditions she lives with. At some parts of the trial you start to feel bad for Mayella. Its sad, no one helps her around the house and she does all the work by herself. It’s understandable why she wants company from Tom. You end up realizing Mayella is terrified of her father and will do anything to get out of his violence. After all, the bruises on her neck and face are believed to have come from him. If Mayella was just a blue jay she wouldn’t save up her money for a year to give away to her siblings for ice cream. Mayella didn’t know what to do, it was either her life or Tom’s and she chose Tom’s. Of course this is selfish but I believe Mayella wanted to tell the truth but was frightened by her intimidating father at the other side of the courtroom. Mayella probably felt like she had to stick with her claim to avoid being beaten again. It is truly sad that someone is afraid to tell the truth because of his or her own father.
Hi, Marina. I like how you explain your thinking here. You show your understanding of the layers to Mayella’s character. Indeed, she carries the burden of shame, but does she gain any real relief when she accuses Tom? Is this going to cause her father to change in any meaningful way? Perhaps her burden is now greater given Tom’s ultimate fate. What do you think?
You also write, regarding Mayella’s false accusation, that “it is understandable why she did it.” Do you, however, find her action justifiable? Should she be punished by the court for lying (committing perjury)? Or would this be unfair? What do you think is the right thing to do?
Continue to develop your thoughts to the point of full explanation. This depth really matters, though it’s challenging to achieve. I know you can do it!
I believe that there is a strong connection between Tom Robinson and the title of the novel; To Kill a Mockingbird. Tom is very much like a mockingbird. They are similar because they both bring joy to those around them and it is a sin to kill them. As stated by Miss Maudie, “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mocking bird.” Like the mockingbird, Tom does not disrupt or harm others in any way. He just tries to mind his own business and help people out of the kindness of his heart.
Sometimes, mockingbirds are preyed upon by senseless hunters or people who do not care if they sin. This is also true for Tom Robinson. Tom Robinson was preyed upon and hunted by the Ewells. Bob Ewell made his daughter Mayella accuse Tom of raping her so that he would not get in trouble for raping her. This was a very sinful thing to do because they knew Tom would be accused guilty. Tom was then put on trial in court and was defended by Atticus. Even Atticus knew his best efforts would probably not save Tom because he was a black man being tried on an all-white jury. Even though most of the courtroom probably was able to figure out that Tom was not guilty. The jury still found him guilty. He was eventually shot. They had killed a man who had done nothing but good for others around him. A man who had never caused trouble for anybody. They had killed a mockingbird. Not only did the Ewells kill a mockingbird, but also the jury and Judge Taylor.
HEY RYAN, you did a good job explaining the reason that Tom Robinson would be convicted no matter what defense he had because he was a black man standing before a white jury that was clearly going to choose the white story. I like how you said he was a mockingbird and not a blue jay because all he did was good for the people. You had a nice interpretation about Bob and Mayella Ewell being blue jays because they sinned and had that innocent black man convicted and shot. Good ideas.
I chose option three. Mayella Ewell is undoubtedly possesses qualities of both a mockingbird and a blue jay. A mockingjay. She possesses the traits a blue jay because she does not want to be guilty of what she knows was unspeakably wrong in Maycomb. She means good and wants to tell the truth, but she knows what would happen if she did. Bob Ewell, her “father”, claims that it was Tom Robinson who raped her, but Mayella cannot confirm this in a consistent manner with Atticus sending a flurry of questions to unhinge her mind. This is her blue jay side showing, as she cannot hold her own dignity and she provides information that can alter a life that has not done anything to wrong her.
Without reading past the first couple chapters of the trial, I would believe that Mayella is a complete and utter bluejay, but after further analysis I believe they she has qualities of a mockingbird hidden behind the brute qualities of Bobby Ewell. On a moral compass, I would place her as neutral evil. She is serving the needs of Bobby Ewell, but she herself does not want to contribute to the madness that is ensuing in court.
As a result of Bobby’s agression towards her, Mayella is a confused women, but her lies will scar her reputation. In my opinion, Mayella is beyond the chance of redemption because she no longer deserves help. So, although Mayella may have traits of a mockingbird in her, the bluejay is most prominent.
In conclusion, I feel as if Mayella is choosing the between two evils. Get beat by her father or have an innocent man killed. She cannot grasp this concept and she would rather have Tom killed than face the wrath of Bob. Atticus touches on this but does not pry. I think Atticus manipulated her mind into exposing the “partial truth”. Throughout the case, Mayella slowly breaks down and more of her mockingbird side is shaven away.
I think that you have done a great job in expressing how you think Mayella shows her side of the blue jay. You had many good examples and you also brought of many vital points in the trial that not many people would not have brought up. You did however not explain in detail how she showed the side of the mockingbird, but other than that you proved and explained your side of the arguement, of how she represented the blue jay more than the mockingbird.
Sam, you do a good job grappling with Mayella’s symbolic status. You suport your claims with relevant details and you organize your ideas in clear succession. (Keep in mind that “In conclusion,” “I,” and other first-person pronouns are superfluous here.) You also express your clear interpretations throughout your writing, which shows that you really understand the complex layers of Mayella’s character.
I like your point about the moral compass; “neutral evil” is an interesting characterization of Mayella. But is she truly neutral with regard to Tom’s ultimate fate? Is she destructive? Also, you write that she “no longer deserves help.” Help from whom? Atticus? Her own attorney? Society at large? I wonder how you are defining “help” in this context. Is anyone ever past the limits of human compassion? Is Mayella?
Keep up the good thinking!
I believe that Mayella Ewell is both a Mockingbird and a Blue jay. One Reason that I believe that she is a Blue jay is because she knows what she is doing, she is trying to get tom killed even though he did not do it. If she was truly a Mocking bird she would not go by what other people would tell her instead she would tell the truth. Especially after Tom had done all that work for her out of kindness, because he did not take the nickels and penny’s that Mayella offered him whenever he helped out.
Although Mayella Ewell does know that Tom is going to get killed, I do not believe that it was her decision to accuse tom of raping her. Bob Ewell, Who was Mayellas father, was the one who accused Tom of hurting his daughter his daughter. We never know why Bob did this perhaps it was to cover up the fact that he did it, or maybe he just did not like tom Robison In the first place. You can tell that Mayella feels bad about what she is doing, because at certain points during the trial she just starts sobbing for no reason.
I suppose the only true way to see if mayella was a Mockingbird or a Blue jay would be to see how she had reacted after the trial. Or after Tom was sent to prison and shot 14 to make sure that he would not escape. If Mayella was truly against Tom and was a blue jay than she would be pleased with the word of Toms death, however most likely she was saddened by Toms death, and felt bad for the man who got killed because he felt bad for her
Jack, you do a good job looking at several layers to Mayella’s character. You note that she sobs during the trial. Do you think she feels guilty about the fact that Tom is on trial because of her accusations? Or is she more afraid of what her father would do if she told the truth? Her reasons for crying are left somewhat ambiguous, although we can infer why she is upset.
You really have me wondering with your comment about how Mayella might react to Tom’s death following the trial. She leaves the novel after the trial. However, perhaps this is another subject open to our inferences. How do you think she would react? Similarly to her father? I think your own inference is supported by the novel. Keep up the good thinking.
Mayella is the type of character that has two sides, one side is that she is a mockingbird which means that it would be a sin to kill or hurt her. Mayella deep down wants to be a good person and tell the truth but she knows her father will punish her by beating her up. During the trial in court Mayella was cracking under pressure because the facts that she was saying didn’t match up such as how Tom Robinson punched her in the left eye. It seemed as if she was about to tell the truth about what really caused her to have all those bruises but she saw her father sit up more in his seat which was a sign to stop talking. Mayella has the potential to be a mockingbird but her father intimidates her making her turn into a blue jay. Blue jays are birds who are annoying and hurt people. At court Mayella is blaming innocent Tom Robinson for something he didn’t do, in fact he was only trying to help Mayella with small chores around the house. Having her lying to everyone just so her father doesn’t go to jail for beating his own daughter up shows how much of a blue jay she is. A mockingbird would stand up for what is right and show leadership, right now it shows how much of a coward Mayella is, showing her blue jay side.
I chose number 6 to answer, which character learns the most significant lesson in this novel, what is the lesson and what are the specific circumstances surrounding it, and why does this lesson matter?
Many characters in the story learn a lesson but in my opinion scout and Jem learn the most. They are the younger characters in the story so I think they learn and retain a lot of information through out the chapters. Scout at first is like any other child; she wants to know everything and doesn’t mind her own business. She and Jem are curious about boo towards the bringing of the story and they try to bother him. Atticus tells them to mind there own business and give Boo his privacy. This teaches scout about bothering others and minding her own business. Also in the beginning of the story, scout gets into a fight, with Walter Cunningham. Atticus has to tell her, it’s wrong to use violence when getting your anger out. Atticus is teaching scout slowly as she is growing up on how to act more mature and she learns some life lessons. Scout and Jem also learn about not being prejudice when Atticus represents Tom Robinson in the trial. The kids had never looked down to people of another race before though because they always had Calpurnia. Calpernia was almost like a mother for example, in chapter 3; Scout makes a comment about Walter Cunningham for putting syrup on his vegetables. Scout doesn’t think anything of it and makes a comment about how he is eating, this gets Calpurnia frustrated. This shows her motherly side to the kids, she teaches them right from wrong, as a mother would do to her own kids. Calpernia also brings them to her church. Where her, Scout and Jem got along with everyone, they are not prejudice towards others and I think they reflects during the trial at the end as well. When it comes to the trial Scout and Jem do not take Mayellas side because she is a woman of the same race, like Atticus they want to hear both sides of the story before accusing anyone of doing anything wrong. I think Scout learns a lot as well as Jem, even though there are more examples for Scout; Jem is by her side learning as well.
Hello Alyssa H.,
You bring many interesting points in your interpretation. I really enjoyed how you went back to the beginning of the novel to remind one of the importance of Calpurnia and how Scout was physically fighting people like Walter Cunningham. The way you switched back to events toward the end of the story was also different, but i continue to enjoy it. For example, when you explain Scout and Jem are learning that some people aren’t too nice, like those who are prejudice. Good connections, Alyssa Hofferth.
Remember to GO DEEP ;)
In the book “To Kill a Mockingbird”, fear poses the greatest amount of danger to the characters. One of the characters that was most affected by fear was Mayella. Not only was she scared of her father and what he did to her, but also of kissing an African American. When fear took her mind over she ended up going to court and blaming a man that did nothing but good for her. Mayella was led into blaming Tom Robinson for hitting and taking advantage of her. Bob Ewell ,the actual person who has beaten Mayella in the past, got her so scared that he controlled what she said and he made her blame someone else for what he really did. I feel like if the fear that was present in Mayella was absent during the case, then the whole case would be different or wouldn’t have even happened. The only reason why she does it is to put away and hide her mistake and try to forget about what happened. It appears that if Mayella was not scared then the case might turn into another direction and Bob Ewell would be blamed for mistreating Mayella. This is just one example where fear in one person can change not only the person’s but also other’s lives. There is also a very visible theme in this case. The theme is that honesty is very important in life. This includes being yourself always and also always being straight forward towards people. Believe it or not but such an important theme can be found within a small amount of pages. Fear is not something to be scared of but something to take head on and later learn from, and to remember that not only can it hurt you but also other people around you.
I liked this response to option 7. I feel that you actually went below the iceberg and picked apart and interpreted many aspects of the trial that related to your question. You related fear to the case presented in the story showing that it can take over a person and make them behave in a way that is not yourself, such as Mayella Ewell. She was one of the victims in the story that endured being in fear, and probably one of the most important ones. I like how you really came up with your own thoughts and wrote about things that aren’t clearly stated in the story. You interpreted the things you saw in between the lines.
In the novel To Kill a Mockingbird there are numerous characters that learn many lessons. However, in my opinion Scout Finch learns the most significant lessons. She learns most of her lessons from her father Atticus Finch. One of the lessons Atticus teaches Scout is to not judge a book by its cover, or in other words to not judge someone without getting to know them. He says “you never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view,until you climb in his skin and walk around in it.” As the novel progresses, Scout, already mature for her age, matures more and really begins to understand what Atticus was saying. Her understanding is shown by her and Boos relationship. At first, when Scout was younger and less mature she thought Boo was scary and crazy. Scout, along with Jem and Dill had an obsession with him. They would dare each other to run on to the Radley property. This lead them to find presents in the oak tree and more. However, as the story continues Scout realizes that Boo is not as crazy as she once believed and that he’s actually kind and caring. Also to her surprise, he ends up saving her life. She learns that Boo was the one leaving gifts in the tree and that he sewed Jem’s pants. It was clear to Scout that Boo cared about her and her brother. Atticus’s talk with Scout made her more open minded and less prejudice and allowed her to have a relationship with Boo and grow overall as person.
Another significant lesson that Scout learns is that “it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” She comes into realization how racism isn’t right and something innocent should not be punished for the sins committed by another. In this particular case, I am comparing Tom Robinson to the mockingbird, Scout knew that Tom was a kind, hard working man that struggled to provide for his family. When he got blamed for raping Mayella Ewell the majority of Maycomb believed him to be guilty and thought punishment is just what he deserved. This is due to the amount of prejudice present in the town at this time. Scout knew this because Atticus was Toms lawyer; Scout learns that it’s not ok to be racist like majority of the town and sees how wrong it is. The fact that Scout is able to realize this at such an early age in her adolescence shows how mature she is.
I chose option 3. I believe that people of Maycomb county see Mayella Ewell as both a ” mockingbird” and a “bluejay.” At the start of the trial it may seem that Mayella Ewell Is a mockingbird because she was crying and telling her story to the jury, most of which was untrue. She would state that Tom Robinson took advantage of her and come at her and attack. At that point everyone feels bad for Mayella and looks at her as a mockingbird. As the trial continues the truth comes out. Atticus hears the story from Tom Robinson about how Mayella invites him inside her home then she actually kisses him. Atticus try’s to tell the jury that she is lying because her father, bob Ewell, saw that happen and I infer that Tom Robinson was the one who beat up Mayella Ewell. At this point the jury are now seeing Mayella as a bluejay. She is becoming defensive with her answers and her true colors show. Mayella Ewell can be seen as both a mockingbird and a bluejay but in reality she is only a bluejay. She has lied to the whole town saying Tom Robinson has attacked and raped her while he only did good deeds for her without pay. She try’s to convict him because he is black and she knew people would believe that story. No true mockingbird would do that and that’s why Mayella Ewell will always be a bluejay.
I liked how you told the story of the trial in detail, and then told how people could think of Mayella of ethier a Mockingbird or a Bluejay. I also liked how you described why Mayella would be looked at as a bue jay or a Mockingbird for example when you said that she had lied to the whole town therefore making her a Bluejay. Good job Talyor
I like how you gave a quick plot summery in the beginning then jumped right into how Mayella is mockingbird. Also, I enjoyed your interpretation towards the end when you state how she is truly a bluejay. You have great analysis in your response and included details to back them up.
Mayella Ewell is a mockingbird which is peaceful, truthful, and one that everyone loves and cares about. However, Mayella is also a blue jay which is chaotic, deceitful and many people don’t care for the blue jays. Mayella is a Mockingbird because she saves nickels for about a year to send her siblings to go and get ice cream. This shows to people that she is kind and would cause people to pity her in any case. However, the truth behind this is to temp Tom Robinson. Mayella is actually lying to the jury about what happened the day she was supposedly taken advantage of by Tom, this shows the deceitfulness of her . Mayella also succeeds in taking pity from everyone like a mockingbird when she is at the testimony stand by crying. This could influence the juries decision on how they convict Tom Robinson because they feel sorry for Mayella Ewell. This is actually just a deceitful plan by Mayella to get the Jury to convict Tom Robinson of taking advantage of her. This also shows the flip side of Mayella Ewell on how she tries to make everyone think she is innocent and right but is actually lying. Mayella is a true Mockingbird when Atticus pities her for having to put up with Bob Ewell in order to gain money for the family. Mayella knows without the little income Bob Ewell makes the family won’t be able to sustain itself so Mayella is beaten and taken advantage of by her father in order for the rest of her family not to starve. Atticus sees this strength and sees the peace Mayella has just like a Mockingbird has.
I like your claims on how Mayella is both a mockingbird, as well as a blue jay. You utilized strong evidence from the story to support your claims. I completely agree with your idea that she is peaceful, while being chaotic at the same time. I also believe that she is a mockingbird, who was abused and corrupted into acting like a blue jay by her father.
I was reading through your response and right off the bat I enjoyed the fact that you didn’t use Mayella’s feelings toward Tom Robinson as support of how she’s a mocking bird and instead you dug deeper and found the details about how she saved money for her siblings. Also, I found the contrast between how she is a bluejay and also a mockingbird interesting esoecially how you tied in different situations when she flipped between being both. Great job Ben.
The connection between tom Robinson and the title of the novel is that he is a member of the society that pays his dues and tries to make the best out of everything. He doesn’t cause any trouble, and he tries to stay out of the way by keeping to himself. He is related to the mockingbird because all he does is bring joy and good to the world. As a mockingbird does, by singing songs for everyone to hear. He is also like a mockingbird because he doesn’t like to bring any attention to himself such as a blue jays do, mockingbirds keep to themselves and only sing melodies for everyone to enjoy. It also says in the book that it is a sin to kill a mockingbird, which it was a sin to kill Tom Robinson, because he didn’t do anything wrong he was only try to help Mayella Ewell but was sucked into her trap of finding a scapegoat to blame what her father actually did to her. Not only does Tom relate to the title of the book because it shows how people can blame each other and get away with it, but it also shows that by killing the “mockingbird” it was a sin to bring that upon such an innocent man that was only trying to help her. He can also relate to the title of the novel because he is a member of society that is only “singing songs” or in other words helping out the community, by cutting up the chiffarobe for her or helping her out whenever she may have needed it. He would put her tasks ahead of his own and the responsibilities he had at his own house. He had 3 children to feed and he tried to do the best he could with 1 hand.
The option that I picked to respond to is number 6. I picked this one because it caught my attention as something that is very important to think about in the story. Though many lessons are learned throughout the story by several characters, I feel the character that learns the most significant lesson in the novel is Scout. I picked Scout because she is one of the youngest characters in the story who I feel still has a lot to learn about life. She still has many lessons to be learned before she truly understands things the way they are. An example of this is when she goes to Tom Robinson’s trial and doesn’t understand why they thought he was guilty even though a very strong supporting case by Atticus Finch was presented. The lesson that she learns here is that things don’t always go the way you want them to go, even though you may be right and they may be wrong. She doesn’t understand the concept of racism within the court and that under all circumstances the court and judge will favor the white. She continues to question why someone would do such a thing even though the evidence presented was in many cases clear that Tom Robinson was innocent.
Scout in this situation must learn to accept that things must go the way they go and there is no changing that. This lesson is important because it is another step to growing up in the life of Scout. It shows that she is still learning much about how things work in the world and that she is yet to see how the world actually works outside of the town of Maycomb. As Mr. Dolphus Raymond states in chapter 20, “You haven’t seen enough of the world yet.” It is true that Scout has not seen enough of the world yet to truly understand how things inside of it work. This supports the lesson that things don’t always go the way you want them to. This is why I feel scout learns the most significant lesson in the novel.
I think you did a very good job Luigi. You explained everything thoroughly and made it very easy to understand.
I like the fact that you put in detailed information about how scout was most influenced becase she was young. I thought thta you could have gone deeper into each example to give more insight on how each of the examples effected scout and if they were possitive or negative influences.
Well where do we start….. Ive known you since, okay lets gets serious. Overall your response is really well written. You managed to go deep and also put your own interpretation of what is happening into your writing. As I was reading I noticed that you could have used a little more fluency in this response. I felt like you were a little jumpy, but tha’ts being super picky since your my friend…. that’s what we do. Otherwise I think you responded very well and managed to get what you wanted to say written down.
Mayella Ewell has qualities of both a bluejay and mockingbird. Bluejays cause problems and are rather annoying to people. A mockingbird creates peace to the rest of the world. Mayella stirs up drama because she went against the rest of the town and did something that other people wouldn’t have approved of. Although Mayella created tension, she didn’t intentionally do anything on purpose because she was just trying to keep her dad happy.
Mayella is related to a bluejay because she tempted a black man and blamed it on him. She knew the truth but she didn’t say anything. She continued to sit there and watch an innocent man be accused of something he didn’t do. Because of Mayella’s actions, a trial was in order and the jury came to the conclusion that Tom Robinson was guilty. She knew nobody would go against a white person’s word so her father would be protected from the real crime he committed. The entire town of Maycomb was affected by Mayella. She caused people to go against each other. People doubted Atticus since he had to defend a black man. They weren’t able to believe anything he said because they thought he was going against all white people. When in reality Mayella was the one going against her town because she tried kissing Tom. She did something she knew people wouldn’t like and since she was caught by her father the only person to put the blame on was Tom Robinson.
Although Mayella shows some assets of being a bluejay, in a way she’s also a mockingbird. Mayella didn’t think she was causing any harm by putting the blame on Tom Robinson. She was raised a certain way and her dad made her believe it was okay. Mayella was scared of telling what actually happened. She thought she was making things better by not saying it was her father who hurt her. Because Mayella blamed Tom, she would be safe from her father. If Mayella went against her father she’d only be putting herself up for a bad result. She was scared of her father and she didn’t want to be beat anymore. Everything she did was best at heart, she didn’t know any better. Mayella wasn’t trying to start drama. Mockingbirds want peace for everyone else and Mayella only wanted peace. She wanted her dad to forget about her mistake. She wanted people to look at her as a person too. Maycomb citizens look at the Ewells as a sad family and they pity them. She thought that if Tom was accused of hurting her then people would look at her more than just the girl that has an alcoholic father; they’d look at her as a white girl who was harmed and shouldn’t have been.
I really like how you explained how Mayella was each kind of bird, but how you also said that she was like both. I also agree that she is like both because she is causing problems for Tom Robinson that is not needed at all, therefore she is a bluejay. But she is also a mockingbird because she wants to be happy but she can’t without getting beaten by her father.
Answer to 7.
I think the biggest danger in this novel is false accusations. Throughout To Kill A Mockingbird, there are situations and accusations made about people that are completely out of line and incorrect. Usually, these accusations or choices of thought are made hastily and believed very quickly as well. In my mind, the people that are most affected are Boo Radley and Tom Robinson but I think that the children and Atticus are affected by the accusations as well. Boo Radley is affected by the accusation that she killed a person which is absurd but the people of Maycomb seem to believed. This blame not only affected Boo Radley’s social life, but Scout and Jem spent their childhoods believing this and doing things based on this such as Jem losing his pants to a fence, and them finding miscellaneous items in a tree such as gum, pennies, soap, and a watch that gave the Finch children a mysterious feeling of curiosity among the Radley household. Boo Radley also saved the life of Scout as she could have barely survived the fire and the cold.
Tom Robinson on the other hand, had a bit worse of a situation. He was killed because of lies and false accusations. In the story, Mayella Ewell had been abused. Her father, Bob Ewell, who called the police and blamed it on Tom Robinson, had done this tragedy. Since her father intimidated her, she accused Tom Robinson in her father’s footsteps out of fear and guilt. At the trial, Atticus Finch clearly made Tom Robinson look innocent with the evidence he provided and the challenge Tom Robinson would have had to actually abuse her the way it had been described. The biggest detail being the hand marks around her neck. So, the jury, under the effects of Maycomb disease, believed the other side of it since prejudice was a major factor, seeing Tom Robinson, a black man, sexually abuse a white girl looks guilty to the jury no matter what evidence is shown. This man lost his life from false accusations.
Hi, Jacob. Your claim that false accusations pose the greatest danger is interesting and insightful. Good job discussing Boo first, followed by Tom, who, you may agree, is in more than “a bit” worse of a situation, especially given his ultimate fate. What motivates Mayella to make her initial false accusation and maintain it throughout the trial? Is she more afraid for her own reputation or of her father’s reaction?
You write that Atticus makes Tom “look innocent” at the trial. Is this a result of the fact that Tom is indeed innocent or is Atticus distorting the truth? I’m not certain what you mean here.
You conclude your response by clearly asserting your interepretation that Tom’s case is unwinnable regardless of what Atticus presents to the jury. Your final sentence effectively concludes your response.
Tom Robinson is related in many ways to the title “To Kill a Mockingbird”. For example, he sinfully gets “shot” down by Mayella Ewell during the trial. It is made obvious by Atticus the Tom didn’t take advantage of her, and Mayella, fearing her father, stuck to her story that he was guilty. Tom Robinson did nothing but help the people around him. He took pity on Mayella, and paid the price for it. Tom is a very obvious mockingbird. The only blue jay quality about him is what people think based on what they see. Due to the color of his skin, this man is convicted of a heinous crime, and later killed. The lines spoken by Atticus Finch, “shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember, it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” Mirror the actions of the people of Maycomb County. Tom Robinson did nothing but provide beautiful music, until the unknowing “child” shot him out of the sky. This child feared what the music of the mockingbird was, so he hastily pulled his trigger, without even a second of thought.
To Kill a Mockingbird is a well chosen title for this novel. The motif “fear of the unknown” is prominent- from the children’s fear of Boo Radley, to the county’s fear of African Americans. This motif continues to grow and mature as the novel progresses. It grows from a childish sense of fright, to a common and dangerous issue that was present for almost a century. Maycomb County killed an innocent man based on the flawed statement of a nineteen year old girl who was more afraid of facing her father than condemning this man. The jury readily accepted this conviction, due to the fact that this man was an African American. They clearly sinned based on their fear.
WRITTEN BY CHRIS K.:
Robert Ewell poses the greatest threat in the novel. He is the most dangerous because of the way that he shows prejudice in the way he acts in the court room. In the court room scene while the trial of an African American who is accused (by Robert) of raping his eldest daughter Mayella, shortly after the trial starts bob is depicted as a man that is very stern and he gives Atticus the cold shoulder by refusing to answer his questions and acting very pompous towards Atticus. Robert is very condescending to a man that is of much higher social and educational class than himself because Atticus is defending an innocent negro that Robert has it in for because his daughter has a crush on the large and in-shape man that Tom Robinson (the defendant) is and he is very expressive and he acts as though he is too good for Atticus’s questions. The trial shows the side of Bob Ewell that would lie and try (and eventually succeeds) to get a man killed for something that he has done no wrong in. Robert also has a violent side as is shown later in the trial when Mayella has clearly been beaten by a man that is predominate with his left hand which Atticus proves Robert is later in the trial after asking Mr. Ewell to sign his name which he promptly does with his left and then admits that he “is not ambidextrous”. Tom could not have committed this atrocity because he has no control over his left arm. Leaving none other than Robert to be the one who beat her based on that and other court room actions that lead to the inference that the Ewells are lying about the trial and just making tom out to be the attacker when really Robert was the one who beat his daughter and Robert is the man with the anger issues and a heavy fist. The culmination of these tell tale signs is in the end when Robert physically attacks Atticus children Jem and scout one night on a walk home. That is why Robert is the most vicious and the biggest threat in the novel.
Hi, Chris. You do a good job analyzing the unsavory character of Bob Ewell. Your claim is strong and you support it well with a variety of details. (Remember that paragraph structure is also essential to great writing. Organize your key points in well-developed paragraphs.)
Indeed, Bob is a great threat to Tom, especially during his false testimony. How might you elaborate on whether you also see him as a threat to Mayella? Is she suffering because of her father or can she defend herself against him in any way?
I like how you note Bob’s menacing behavior toward the children at the end of the novel. However, you have not provided details to clearly explain the actual danger he poses to them. What does he do that shows the extent of the danger he poses? Be sure to fully develop your ideas as you write.
7) Bob Ewell poses the greatest in danger in the novel because he believes he’s superior to Tom and can get away with anything because he is a white man. Although Bob is poor, he is still above Tom on the social class.
I think that Bob holds a majority of the danger in the novel because he has the potential to do a lot, but because of his lack in education he doesn’t seem to follow through on what he could have taken advantage of. Also, he seems to have Mayella under a spell. There’s obviously something going on between their relationship that she hides because when Mayella started to come to some sort of agreement Mr. Ewell raised his body up to give her a reminder of the story she is supposed to stick to.
Mr. Ewell also poses the greatest danger to Atticus because the grudge he holds in court. Also, when dealing with a person like Bob you never know what you’re dealing with. Bob is capablel of many things, and since he wasn’t raised and doesn’t live properly, he can be certainly scummy.
Although your writing was on the shorter side, you were able to get good points across about the characters. Like Bob, most people would have just picked Tom because of his skin color but you went deeper and based it off of personality and actions the characters had in the story. Also you were able to give us background on Bob Ewell saying, “Bob is capable of many things, and since he wasn’t raised and doesn’t live properly, he can be certainly scummy.” This was a good way of supporting your claim and position on you opinion.
Throughout the novel, many characters learn different lessons; however, I think the character that learns the most significant lesson is Scout because she learns from her own actions. Anything she did she learned from it. In the novel, Atticus is kind of strict with Scout because he wants her to learn when she has done something wrong. He is usually the one to step in when she did something she wasn’t suppose to. A lesson that Scout could have learned is that everybody learns from his or her own mistakes. For example, in the novel, Scout didn’t always get along with people, like at her school. She didn’t always go to school, but when she did, she got into a fight. Whenever Scout got into a fight, Atticus explained to her that when she hears something she doesn’t like, rather than using her fists to solve the problem she should use her words.
In the beginning, Scout never kept to her own business. It seemed as if she always wanted to get involved in every situation that didn’t need her involvement. In part one of the novel, Scout, Jem and Dill somewhat got involved in Boo Radley’s business by trying to figure out why he would never come out of his house and assuming that he was not real. By doing this, Scout learned from Atticus that people make choices in life and Boo’s choice was to stay in his house.
Another lesson that Scout learns is what’s right over what’s wrong. For example, at Tom Robinson’s trial, when the mob of men were going into the jail where Tom was being held, she snuck in with them. However when she got in Atticus caught her and asked her to leave but she wouldn’t. Scout thought that staying was the correct thing to do when in reality it wasn’t. I believe that Scout has her own opinion about certain things and views life in a different way than other kids her age do.
I think that scout learns the the most significant lesson in this novel. For example when Atticus was speaking at the trial he really expresses to everyone that he knows the most about this town and then scout started to understand her father a lot more. She learned the most significant lesson from her own father who has been sharing his wisdom throughout the whole story. Scouts learns the most significant lesson in her life because she didn’t catch the May comb disease. The specific circumstances around are very difficult to understand because oh the May comb disease. For example the people at the trial did not understand Atticus’s true reasoning for know that Tom Robinson is not guilty. Scout understands this when she is a lot older because when this happened she was very young and couldn’t really understand the whole situation.
This lesson matters because it affects the way scout feels during the story. Scout is now very wise just like her father. I feel as of this lesson Ryan taught scout to be wise. I say that because Atticus set her daughter up for greatness. He showed her the path to being a very wise person in her life. The lesson that scout gets from all of these actions is that she is now a very wise person.
Good job Bailey! I think you did a good job developing your ideas and organizing them. I liked how you mentioned the Maycomb disease. That was a good point. I also liked how you said Atticus set up Scout for greatness. Keep up the good work.
WRITTEN BY MONTE G.:
Tom Robinson and the title “To Kill A Mockingbird” have a connection between each other because Tom is a mockingbird telling the truth and he got shot in the back of the head by a prison guard while Tom was trying to escape from prison after he got put in there for being found guilty in court.
Tom Robinson and the title, “To Kill a Mockingbird” connect in a very prominent way. First off, let me explain the difference between a mockingbird and a blue jay in terms of people. Someone with a blue jay’s personality is constantly causing trouble and conflict. They are also very selfish. On the other hand, a mockingbird is someone who is selfless and always has the best intentions in mind.
Tom Robinson is a perfect example of a mockingbird. He is a black man who works a tough job during the day, then has endless responsibilities at home. Despite all of that, he still found the time to help Ms. Mayella Ewell with manual chores because he felt sorry that nobody ever helped her out at home. In court, Mayella lied and said that Tom raped and abused her. However, the offender was actually her father, Bob. Even though Mayella knew that it was wrong to accuse Tom, she acted out of fear that Bob would further the abuse that he had already committed. Later in the novel, Tom is deemed guilty and sentenced to jail, where he is shot and killed.
Maycomb’s disease is racism. However, it goes both ways. For example, when Calpurnia took the children to her church, she was confronted by a woman named Lula, who told her that she had no business bringing Jem and Scout into a church where black people worshipped. In my opinion, it’s not important whether or not it’s a “black church” or a “white church.” Either way, you are worshipping the same God. That should be a big enough reason for people to get along and come together for a single purpose. Also, the court was very racist in Tom Robinson’s trial. The judge and jury were more suspicious of him being guilty just because he was of a “less superior” race. To kill a mockingbird, it requires betrayal, lies, and a poor judgment, which is exactly what happened to Tom Robinson.
By simply looking at the cover of the novel at the title, the first question that comes to most’s mind is “why?” A simple connection that is found on the surface of this book’s personality is when Atticus explains to Jem that it is a sin to kill a mockingbird. However, the more important connection is between the title and Tom Robinson. One reason of why the two are connected is because when Atticus refers to a mockingbird, he explains how they don’t bother anyone and only help people by ridding their gardens of insects. Tom is simply an overall “mockingbird” in the sense that he only wished to help Mayella Ewell and never caused any harm and yet was still targetted by the community for “wrong-doing”. This example is simply using a figure of speech to explain the connection between Tom Robinson and the title of the book, however there is a much more literal connection. Within the novel, Tom is shot and killed after being accused of raping Mayella when in reality he had just helped her with another odd job she had for him. In Atticus’s eyes this would be like letting a mockingbird help cleanse your garden of pests, then turn around and shoot it down and saying you shot it because it tried eating your plants in the garden.
In my personal opinion, I find it extremely interesting how authors will give an insite into the book’s imaginative world and time line through simply the novel. I also believe that in this story, the connections made between mockingbirds/bluejays and humans are extremely accurate and a famous quote that sums that situation up is “Why must the good die young?” However, many would believe that the Ewells should be pinned for the sin of killing a mockingbird, however in the bigger picture it is the entire town of may comb for allowing themselves to be consumed by “the disease of Maycomb”.
I really enjoyed how you made the inference that Tom Robinson was a Moackingbird and it is a sin to kill a Mockingbird. You are able to depict the deep details and going deep instead of just floating on the surface. Fantastic Job
As we read this novel, we witness Jem’s coming of age. He transforms from a friend and equal figure to Scout, into a role model and guide for her. Jem has learned many significant lessons throughout the novel that contribute to his escalating maturity. First, he recognizes the real reason why Boo stays inside. Second, he learns true bravery.
Jem and Scout know of a man in a house down the street dubbed “Boo” Radley. The rumors about this man stretch far beyond the truth. Supposedly, as a teenager he was rebellious and eventually was forced to stay inside. This man has remained inside of the house throughout his adulthood. At the end of chapter 23, Jem says to Scout “I think I’m beginning to understand why Boo Radley’s stayed shut up in the house all this time… It’s because he wants to stay inside.” Jem has become old enough to recognize the good people, the bad people, and the constant mix of good in bad in them. He realizes that society is not as simple as he once thought. Like Scout, he once thought that there was only one kind of folks: folks. He now knows that it is much more than that. People can be cruel, judgmental and racist. Jem now understands why Boo stays inside. Boo is avoiding the malicious and pitiless society that Maycomb has become. Jem can’t help but to respect Boo for staying inside. He knows whats goin on.
Another lesson that Jem learns in this novel is bravery. In the beginning chapters of the novel, Jem believes that bravery is touching Boo Radley’s house, and being near the yard. He brings Scout and Dill along with him as his partners in crime throughout his childish mischief. As he ages, he is given examples of true bravery. He sees men rush into Miss Maudie’s house as it roars with flames to retrieve her valuables. He sees his father’s humility when shooting Tim Johnson, the mad dog. He watches Scout stand up against a mob of angry southerners, and change their minds. Jem uses his newfound bravery to make right, humble decisions. For example, when they find Dill hiding under the bed, he knows he must tell Atticus. Dill and Scout are angry with Jem, but Jem knew that they needed to call Dill’s mother and Miss Rachel. Jem never apologized for his actions in this example, because he truly believed he did the right thing, even if Scout and Dill thought otherwise.
Jem learns many lessons that contribute to his maturity, but I think that these two lessons are very significant. He recognizes the power in humility. He becomes more of a role model and guide for Scout, rather than just a friend. Jem has transformed from a child into a young adult, with valid opinions and insightful wisdom.
WRITTEN BY DAVID P.:
Mayella Ewell is a mocking bird because she is afraid to speak up especially when she was at the trial because her father abused her and she knows that if she speaks up that her father might abuse her further. She could slander her family name. Also Mayella is a mocking bird because mocking birds don’t do anything but make sweet music for everyone. Mayella is like this because she didn’t care about Tom Robinson’s color. All she cared about was that he was nice to her and didn’t treat her like dirt. For example every time Tom would go by her house the kids would sit in the windows and just watch her clean and not even bother to help her. Also mocking birds get picked on by blue jays. This is very much like Mayella because she was abused by her father and society. For example, Maycomb County chose an all white court and was prejudiced. Also Mayella’s father was very abusive and a drunk who even said that he didn’t know if Mayella was his daughter in public. Mayella Ewell is like a blue jay because she herself picked on a mocking bird. For example during the court scene Mayella was in the witness stand and testified against Tom Robinson who did nothing wrong except help Mayella and make her feel like a human being. Above all that she accused someone of being guilty of something they didn’t do. Mayella was also a blue jay because she was the cause of a mocking bird’s death, the mocking bird being Tom Robinson. I think Mayella Ewell was guilty of being human and it is very hard to say whether Mayella Ewell is a mocking bird or a blue jay. If anything, she’s neither and is just a spectator in the whole controversy.
Mayella Ewell is a mocking bird to some extent because she recognizes that it is wrong to have tom Robison go to prison for the charges. Also she is lying out of fear not because she wants to lie about who beat her. She is lying out of necessity because she is dependent on her father for financial support. Another reason is if she tells the truth and her father is not convicted he may go after her and try to seek revenge on his daughter. Although her father beat her she may have still loved him and blamed it on his drinking instead of his prejudice toward the fact that she kissed a black man. She is also a mocking bird because never felt prejudice toward to and respected him as an equal even know he was a black man in a family that her father was extremely prejudice and was not too good to have him in her housel. She was may have not told the truth out of fear of being ridiculed for wanting to kiss a black man and having all of the town disapprove of her and cause the Ewell family’s status to be further downgraded which was difficult because e they were supported by the towns welfare.
Mayella Ewell is a blue jay because she is given the chance to change her testimony to admit that she was actually beaten by her angry drunken father but she chooses to send an innocent family man to prison or to be killed. Tom had done nothing but to be companionate toward mayella and helped her with chores around the house because he felt sorry because no one around the house helped her. She was also a blue jay because she agreed to carry out the trial against tom even know she knows that it would leave his children fatherless with no income. She is also a blue jay because she only thought about herself and the problems that would come to her and not about tom’s family.
I liked how you recognized that Mayellas family would be downgraded because she kissed a black man, even though there is not really any lower they can get, only her personally.
Tom Robinson is connected to the title To Kill a Mockingbird. Tom was a very helpful man towards Mayella Ewell because he felt bad for her. Mayella Ewell did not have many friends to offer, mostly because she stayed at home most of the time. Her father, Bob, would then award her with a nice beating. Now, Robinson did not know about the terrible relationship between Mayella and Bob. Because Bob Ewell saw Tom in this house, he decided he would be able to blame his actions on Tom and get away with it. Tom Robinson is an innocent man. He was a genuinely kind person who in the end is destroyed by his willingness to help Mayella Ewell. Just like a mockingbird, Robinson never hurt anyone. He is hardworking, honest, and decent. He helps Mayella with the chores without asking for anything in return. Mayella and Bob “shoot” at him by accusing him of a crime he could not have committed. The town also “shoots” by assuming that Tom is guilty just because he is a Negro and his victim is white. After he is killed, people assume it’s typical of a Negro to cut and run.
During the trial, Tom Robinson is repeatedly asked questions by Atticus. Atticus clearly had a very well thought out plan, but surprisingly did not work. After Atticus was finished with putting Tom on the stand, he then let the jury do their thing…the right thing. When the jury came to their final decision, everyone knew that Bob Ewell was going to jail. Even the court judge knew it. But, come to find out, they claimed Tom Robinson guilty. Everyone was shocked. They accused Tom guilty mostly because they did not want to deal with the fact of the whole town criticizing them for letting a black man free. By sentencing him to death, the jury metaphorically “killed a mockingbird.”
You have some really good thoughts and portray them well. I like how you included that everyone knew Bob Ewell was going to jail. That point can be very arguable depending on how you look at the book. Some people may say that Tom Robinson was automatically going to jail because he was a different race and citizens of Maycomb didn’t respect him. Though others, like you, may say Bob was going to jail because they could tell that he was lying and because of Mayella’s actions on the stand.
Tom Robinson was an honest and reliable worker,like what his previous employer, Mr Link Deas testified and he also helped Mayella without payment because he felt sorry for her. This shows that Mockingbirds do not harm anyone. Mockingbirds contribute to the society without expecting any reward. Tom Robinson did not sexually harass Mayella. He was honest,innocent and kind. He commended Mayella for treating the children to ice cream, he had the interest of the women and the children before he said “something not fittin'”and he also does not blame Mayella for causing him to be charged for sexual harassment. He was indirect to say that it was Mayella’s fault, “I say she’s mistaken in her mind”, which shows his consideration and kindness because he does not want to ruin Mayella’s reputation. He knows that Mayella had “broken a rigid code of our society” and she would be “hounded from our midst as unfit to live with”. Tom Robinson is a mockingbird in that he never hurt anyone, never did anything wrong or caused trouble. All he ever did was attempt to help Miss Ewell, to have pity on her. By sentencing him to death, the jury metaphorically “killed a mockingbird.” The jury symbolizes the true effect of racism upon the average people in the south. Even though they knew that Tom robinson was innocent, and that all the evidence pointed to Mr. Ewell as the guilty. Ewell was white and robinson was black, they voted for the white. Even though Bob Ewell is a terrible and corrupted man, and Tom Robinson is a hardworking, down to earth person, they choose Ewell, only because of his race.
Option number 3
In the story To Kill a Mockingbird Mayella Ewell is both a Blue Jay and a Mockingbird. She is in part a Mockingbird because she is in part a victim and she just wanted attention and then victimized by her abusive father. This makes her a Mockingbird because during the trial it’s obvious that she wants to tell the truth but fear holds her back. Mayella is also part Mockingbird because she doesn’t mean trouble when she kisses Tom she just want some kind of attention know matter the race. She doesn’t expect for him to reject her and she doesn’t expect her father to see her trying to seduce a black man. This proves that she is a Mockingbird because she does have innocence and does not mean for harm to happen.
Mayella Ewell is part Blue Jay as well because she does try to seduce a black man, during this time this was socially unfit for any white woman to do never mind the fact that he was married with kids. She is also seen as this because during the trial she has the chance to confess and tell the truth about what happened that day. She has the option to set the record right but instead she continues to lie and accuse the wrong man. Just the fact that she accused Tom in the first place is evidence of how she is part Blue Jay. Another example is that when Tom is kind and helps her she takes advantage or his kindness and tries to seduce him. She persists with her advances until her father rushes into the room.
Mayella Ewell is both a Mockingbird and a Blue Jay. She tries to cover her Blue Jay side with her innocent Mockingbird side.
7) I think that lies are one of, if not the biggest danger within the novel. As the story goes on more lies are built on top of another. When “To kill a mockingbird” first starts off, the original lie is that Boo Radley is a dangerous man. But as you read on you start to figure out that he is in fact a very kind man who gives Scout and Jem gifts. Not only does he give them random things but he also has helped them out on a few occasions. For example Boo fixed Jem’s ripped pants and also gave Scout a blanket so she didn’t freeze. For people to say Boo was a bad person was to just make up for the fact that he never left the house.
As the novel continues so do the lies. The biggest lie happens to be when Mayella Ewell goes to court claiming to of been raped by Tom Robinson, a crippled Negro. Some how she was able to convince all of Maycomb that he did in fact do so. The sad thing is when listening to her case you can tell things don’t line up and the story of a one handed Negro choking her seemed rather unreasonable, but since the majority of Maycomb is plagued with racism it worked. They would much rather have an innocent colored man die at the stand then a guilty white man. Sadly due to the lies in court Mayella’s father was able to escape from prosecution and cost an innocent man his life.