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The novel To Kill a Mockingbird is a rich text consisting of themes that were the harsh reality of the novels setting rural Alabama during the 1930s Racism discrimination prejudice and hatred are all among the issues that author Harper Lee deals with In addition to these weighty and unsettling topics in the novel Miss Lee revolves her plot around the life of a young girl named Scout Finch Scout is telling the reader the story in retrospect when the novel begins We learn she is six years old and has an older brother named Jem Central to the plot is the childrens innocence Their relative naivete can be observed through the simple ways in which they play and pass the time Jem and Scout are fascinated with the mysterious Boo Radley a recluse who according to Jem comes out only at night to eat cats and squirrels in addition to looking through peoples bedroom windows The scare each other with ghosts stories and Scout gets into fights almost daily When the novel concludes she looks back at the events that have transpired throughout the length of the story and we realize to what extent both her and Jems characters have grown One of the most profound examples of the innocence the children bear is during Tom Robinsons trial Jem is convinced that the jury will be forced to acquit Tom because his father Atticus had proven him innocent beyond a shadow of a doubt When the verdict returned is in fact the exact opposite Jem is astonished His hands were white from gripping the balcony rail And his shoulders jerk as if each guilty is a separate stab between them Unlike many of those in Maycomb the children see things with an unbiased eye They harbor no prejudice or discriminatory feelings towards anyone no doubt because of their upbringing by their morally inclined father Atticus FinchOne of the more evident of the themes present
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