To Kill a Mockingbird

layered literature

How is To Kill A Mockingbird layered with depth and compexity?

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One example would be the chapter about Mrs. Dubose. The children witness her suffering as she fights her morphine addiction; that's one level of learning, about pain. Then she dies and leaves a flower blossom for Jem; that's a level of learning, about forgiveness. Finally, Atticus explains that he wanted the children to see that courage is facing an unbeatable enemy with dignity. That is the next level of learning.

Arthur Radley presents multiple levels also. On the level of social graces, he is scary and mysterious because he chooses to stay indoors. On the level of "family reputation," he is accepted (not bothered by anyone but curious children) because the Radley name is good. On the level of human interaction, he is the subject of much rumor but later reveals himself to be kind and brave. Scout learns first to leave the man alone because his life is none of her business, then she wants to have a "normal" relationship with him as a neighbor, then she comes to see him as a valued protector and friend.