To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee is a heart breaking historical read. It is set in 1935 in America’s Deep South and can be seen as a social commentary on the time.
In spite of living in the land of the free where all men are supposed to be created equal, the novel highlights the racial prejudices, inequality and hatred that are deeply rooted in many ignorant hearts. It is a painful read where men are judged guilty by the colour of their skin.
In contrast there are pure hearts who see the goodness within and do not judge. They have nerves of steel to fight the prejudices of the day.
The novel is told through the eyes of eight year old Scout who has more compassion and discerning of character than many adults. She is mature beyond her years as she sees the goodness of hearts. She dresses as a tomboy much to the disappointment of her aunt who tries to instil female qualities into her. The female characters within the novel are overpowered by the men. Females were seen as weaker at that time and without the wherewithal to sit on a jury. In contrast there are some strong female characters who long to break out of that mould.
The modern reader is horrified by the attitudes and actions of the day. Men should be seen for the content of their character and not the colour of their skin.
To Kill A Mockingbird was a powerful but heart breaking read. Its words will remain with me forever.