To Kill a Mockingbird

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Dublin Core

Title

To Kill a Mockingbird

Subject

Adult Fiction

Description

Set in the 1930s in the fictional town Maycomb, Alabama, this book focuses on Scout Finch who lives with her older brother, Jem, and their widowed, lawyer father, Atticus. Scout, Jem, and their friend Dill are interested in the reclusive neighbour, Boo Radley, who occasionally leaves gifts for them but does not appear in person. When Tom Robinson, a local black man, is accused of raping a young white woman, Mayella Ewell, Atticus is asked to defend him, which he does. Atticus, Scout, and Jem are all taunted by the rest of the town and are called "nigger-lovers". Still, Attiucs proceeds to prove to the court that the accusers, Mayella and her father Bob, are lying and that Mayella had made advances on Tom, and was caught and beaten by her father. Still, the jury convicts Tom, who later gets shot as he tried to escape prison. Despite the conviction, Bob Ewell is humiliated and vows revenge on Atticus. He attacks the defenceless Scout and Jem on their walk home one night. In the confusion, Boo comes to their rescue and Bob is killed. Atticus believes Jem is responsible for the killing, but the sheriff claims that Bob simply fell on his own knife. Boo disappears again after this incident.

The book has been frequently challenged in US schools and libraries due to its racial slurs, profanity, and discussion of rape, and has appeared on ALA's most challenged books lists. School districts in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia have also attempted to have the book removed from school's reading lists. Some have said that the book resonates well with white students, but that black students have found it demoralizing.

Creator

Harper Lee

Publisher

New York: Grand Central Publishing

Date

1960

Format

Softcover

Language

English

Collection

Citation

Harper Lee, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Special Collections, accessed January 28, 2023, https://archive.fims.uwo.ca/specialcollections/items/show/92.