Jim Crow in "To Kill A Mockingbird" by Harper Lee

Essay by AnonymouseJunior High, 9th grade February 2007

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The Jim Crow laws had a very strong influence on the way of life of many people in the late 1800's up to the mid-1900's. Segregation was very enforced and had the effect of people discriminating against each other. The Jim Crow laws had affected the southern part of the US, Alabama in particular. In Harper Lee's novel "To Kill a Mockingbird", many traces of the influence of the Jim Crow laws can be found. Her story is based on life in the 1930's and takes place in Maycomb County in Alabama. The traces of the laws are mostly seen through the characters in her novel and in the way that they act towards each other.

The narrator and main character Jean Louise Finch, better known as Scout, has her own thoughts on the ways that people treat each other and how they discriminate. Many adults may think that she has little understanding of the things that go around in the world and why things are done the way they are.

In reality Scout, as well as many other children, understands just as much about life as we do. The only difference might be that her point of view is more innocent and ideal. In time Scout starts to discover bit by bit that life is not fair and it is not how it should be, but it is instead segregated between the people.

The Ewells are very set apart from the rest of the society. This is clearly shown when Atticus stated that "the Ewells had been the disgrace of Maycomb for three generations" and that "the Ewells were made up of an exclusive society made up of Ewells." (Lee, p.30) The Ewells were treated just as inferior as the African Americans, yet they had more privileges because they...