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Social Class Prejudice, To Kill A Mockingbird Verbal-Visual Essay

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Maureen Mallett

on 27 March 2013

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Transcript of Social Class Prejudice, To Kill A Mockingbird Verbal-Visual Essay

Aunt Alexandra The visual interpretation of Aunt Alexandra I chose was a dress from the 1930's. Alexandra is very specific as to how girls should dress and act. Aunt Alexandra relates to the theme of social class prejudice because she is "fanatical" about Scout dressing like a boy and not a proper lady. But also Aunt Alexandra did not believe Scout is civilized enough so she did not treat her with respect during Christmas, " Aunt Alexandra was fanatical on the subject of my attire...At Christmas dinner, I sat at the little table in the diningroom; Jem and Francis sat with the adults at the dining table. Aunty had continued to isolate me... I sometimes thought of asking her if she would let me sit at the big table with the rest of them just once, I would prove to her how civilized I could be" (Lee 108). Aunt Alexandra treated Scout unfairly because she did not aprove of her attire and did not think she was civilized. Aunt Alexandra is showing social class prejudice to Scout because she believes she is not as civilized as her. Social class prejudice is discrimination on the basis of a social class. It includes attitudes and behaviors, systems and policies that are set up to benefit the upper class. In "To Kill a Mockingbird", the theme of social class prejudice is very important, especially since the book takes place during a time of poverty. A time when many people had no money and often used skills and jobs as a way to repay a debt. I believe that this is a very important theme that plays an important part of the plot. Social Class Prejudice Mrs. Henry Lafayette Dubose A visual interpretation of Mrs. Dubose would be an alarm clock. The clock is a good interpretation because in the novel Jem cuts the tops off of every camellia bush Mrs. Dubose owed. As a punishment Jem read to Mrs. Dubose every day and the clock alarm going off signified the end of their session. Mrs. Dubose fits into the theme of social class prejudice because of her treatment of Jem and Scout. When Scout describes Mrs. Dubose it is very obvious they are not approved of, "Previous minor encounters with her left me with no desire for more... Jem and I hated her. If she was on the porch when we passed, we would be raked by her wrathful gaze, subjected to ruthless interrogation regarding our behavior, and given a melancholy prediction on what we would amount to when we grew up, which was always nothing" (Lee 132). The reason I chose this quotation is because it shows Mrs.Dubose's authority and her disapproval of the children. Mrs.Dubose does not believe the Finch children deserve her respect, thus she believes she is better than them. Mrs. Dubose has a set opinion on the children which takes away from their agency. Although not an obvious form of social class prejudice, Mrs. Dubose actions towards the children fit into the theme. The visual interpretation I chose for the character Scout Finch is a pair of old worn out sneakers. Scout would rather wear sneakers and overalls instead of her Sunday best. Scout is more of a tomboy than a lady, although she knows what society expects of her Scout does not find it necessary to change. Scout relates to the theme of social class prejudice because of her treatment and reaction to Walter Cunningham, " 'There's some folks who don't eat like us,' she whispered fiercely, 'but you ain't called on to contradict 'em at the table when they don't. That boy's yo' comp'ny and if he wants to eat up the table cloth you let him, you hear?' 'He ain't company, Cal, he's just a Cunningham' " (Lee 32-33). This quotation relates to the theme of social class prejudice.Although Scout might be a little more wealthy than Walter Cunningham she believes he does deserve her respect or her manners. Scout thinks that what Walter did to his food is outrageous therefore considers him as not company. This is a great example of how Scout was being prejudice because of someones social upbringing. To Kill A Mockingbird Upper Class is Weighed More Lower Class is Weighed Less
Mrs. Merriweather I chose a very nice looking pearl necklace as a visual interpretation of Mrs. Merriweather. Mrs. Merriweather thinks highly of herself , she is some what self centered and focuses on her appearence. The ladies also think she is respectable and has very fine things. Although Mrs.Merriweather might seem respectable she can also be two-faced. An example would be insulting Atticus , " 'I tell you there are some good but misguided people in this town. Good, but misguided. Folks in this town who think they're doing right... but alll they did was stir'em up' " (Lee 311). This relates to the theme of social class prejudice because Mrs. Merriweather believes she is better than Atticus therefore does not believe in what he did for Tom Robinson. Since she is so focused on herself and has a set way of mind she feels better and more civilized than Atticus. This is how Miss Merriweather fits into this theme of social class prejudice. Social Class Prejudice Scout Finch
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