To Kill a Mockingbird

Unexpected Models: The Importance of Neighbors as Seen in To Kill a Mockingbird 10th Grade

The main focus of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird (1960) is that neighbors are, and always will be, the essence of a town and that they are important in many respects. Neighbors not only being those that live directly next to you but also those that live in your community as a whole. As brought to the fore by Lee, neighbors are crucial role models and teachers that have a great effect on, the children who will eventually be the next generation of role models, teachers, and neighbors that the world will see. However, the inverse is also brought up by Lee as a way to show that a child’s view is often an integral part of understanding the situation and moving forward in a constructive way.

The most obvious point that Lee uses To Kill a Mockingbird to make is that the adults in the town of Maycomb can be very good models for behavior and thought processes that children of Jem and Scout’s maturity would otherwise be too naive to grasp at. A striking demonstration of this is Dolphus Raymond’s startling insight into the mentality of the town of Maycomb, as well as America’s deep south as a whole, that he makes when he says, ‘Secretly, Miss Finch, I’m not much of a drinker, but you see they could never, ever, understand that I live...

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