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Prejudice is a Disease with Deep and Far-Reaching Roots

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Jenning Lai

on 30 September 2015

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Transcript of Prejudice is a Disease with Deep and Far-Reaching Roots

Scout and Jem grew up in an environment where racism was prominent, this influences they way they grew up.
Prejudice is a disease with deep and far-reaching roots
Tom's statements in the trial flatly contradict Bob and Mayella Ewell's stories, and yet even when the court it presented with clear-cut evidence, he is still convicted.
At times, Mayella is unsure of herself. She stutters and contradicts the statements she made in the previous moments.
"No, I don't recollect if he hit me. I mean yes I do, he hit me" (185).
While on the stand Heck Tate testifies to what he witnessed, stating,"...I remember now she was bunged up on that side of the face...the right side..." (169).
Since the vote had to be unanimous the deliberation took hours. Only one juror went into that room with an open mind while the other eleven made up their minds before they even walked into the court room.
To Kill a Mockingbird
by Harper Lee, represents what racism was like during the Great Depression. It brings to light how prejudice hinders a persons ability to think and act based upon clear and unbiased thoughts.
And during Atticus's final speech, he says that there is circumstantial evidence to indicate that Mayella was beat by someone who exclusively uses their left, her father just so happens to be left- handed and abusive when drunk while Tom's left arm is crippled.
When Calpurnia decides to take Jem and Scout to her church, conflicts arise when a woman, Lula, exclaims that she does not want white children in their church when they have their own.This goes to shows how in every community there will always be some who do not accept them.
The prejudice reaches Scout and Jem's school and even family. First Cecil Jacobs insults Atticus, then Francis, Scout's cousin, calls Atticus a nigger-lover.
"...I guess it ain't your fault that Uncle Atticus is a nigger-lover besides, but I'm here to tell you it certainly does mortify the rest of the family-"(83).
Mrs. Dubose the old lady down the street, perhaps the meanest woman who ever lived and who always insulted the kids, even yelled, "your father's no better than the niggers and trash he works for!" (102). Mrs. Dubose probably grew up learning to dislike Negroes, the seeds of racism too integrated into society.
Not only does Maycomb's disease affect Jem and Scout's childhood but more specifically their loss of innocence. Jem loses faith in humanity and Scout learns and experiences things that most girls her age do not.
After Tom Robinson is convicted of rape, Jem completely loses all hope in humanity. He was able to see how the evidence incriminated Bob Ewell right from the start. So those words, "Guilty...guilty...guilty...guilty," (211) were all separate stabs in his back. He cried at the injustice.
Even without evidence, people believed what they wanted to (such as Stephanie Crawford), despite having ever witnessed or experienced it. Boo Radley did not deserve such a scary reputation, he harmed none, he was a mockingbird. Scouts realization of this by the end of the novel marks her growing up. The maturity by which she handles Boo saving them is remarkable. She greets him with a ,"hey Boo," when she first meets him (270).
The Night Atticus stands guard outside Tom Robinson's cell and the mob comes to kill Tom, Scout essentially disarms the situation with her innocence. She reminds Mr. Cunningham that they are friends. She also realizes the severity of Maycomb's disease, her father could have died that night had they not intervened.
During the Great Depression, racism and prejudice burrowed itself deep into society.
To Kill a Mockingbird
clearly showed how unfair the disease made the town.
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