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To Kill A Mockingbird-Society Norms Vs. Individuality Essay, Research Paper

SOCIETY NORMS VS. INDIVIDUALITY

The book To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee deals

with several controversial topics. Among these is society

norms vs. individual. The setting of the story takes place

in the 1930 s in the southern town of Maycomb. In Maycomb it

was hard for people like Atticus Finch, Boo Radley, and Heck

Tate to maintain individuality in a 1930 s society.

Atticus Finch was distinct from his society for several

reasons. Atticus (a white man) was overall respectful to

blacks. Maycomb was a predominantly segregated town, and the

majority of whites did not tolerate blacks. Atticus however,

treated them like equals. For instance, he defended Tom

Robinson. Tom Robinson was a black man accused of raping a

white woman. Contrary to everyone else Atticus believed he

was innocent, and treated the case no differently.

Similar to Atticus, Boo Radley did not correspond with

his society. Also, unlike the public he didn t gossip.

Primarily he was what the townspeople talked about. In

addition opposed to every other character cited he does not

go to church. Instead he spends his time inside his house.

Heck Tate is also his own individual. After learning

Boo Radley killed Bob Ewell, Heck Tate has a right as

sheriff to take him into custody. Despite Atticus s demand

he does not. He knows the town does not need anymore gossip,

and claims Bob Ewell fell on his knife. If he had followed

the beliefs of the town he would have thought of Boo Radley

as barbarous. Yet he does not because he won t let Boo

Radley go on trial. Also, in spite of everyone s belief, he

also takes into consideration the innocence of Tom Robinson.

In any society it is important to maintain ones own

individuality, and not follow the predilection of others.

This book truly conveys the importance of distinctiveness.

Furthermore, no society can be described as normal. Society

follows examples from the past, and every person contributes

to this. Instead each person should contribute to their own

individualism.


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