Thomas Jefferson Education discussion

To Kill a Mockingbird

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

I loved that book so much! I just finished it a few days ago, and it really touched me so much.Although it was a bit challenging, considering the fact, I'm only a child, it still just kind of got to me.It really makes you think.

message 2: by Andrea (new)

Andrea (andreamabey) | 1 comments This book addresses a lot of important issues. Are there more than one kind of folk? Is prejudice a choice? It also shows the courage of a man to stand up for what is right when he stands to lose his reputation, his ability to make a living, and even his own life.

message 3: by Andrew (new)

Andrew | 1 comments Mod
Hi Tanya,
Everyone is in charge of adding to the books in this group! :) If you love a book and consider it a personal classic, please add it to the group's bookshelf.

message 4: by Natasha (new)

Natasha | 2 comments I see the thread of this discussion of To Kill a Mockingbird has grown a little cold, but it makes a good starting point to generate some more activity in this forum. I’m excited to find this group and want to give a little back to the TJEd community since I have benefitted tremendously from it.

Thoughts on Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird:

Here’s a story filled with unlikely heroes:
• Atticus Finch, who by his children’s estimation was feeble, nearly fifty and “didn’t do anything” worth bragging about. But that wasn’t the worst of it. Even being inconspicuous would have been preferable to the embarrassing buzz he created by making a genuine effort to defend a black man in a community hostile to his race.
• Boo Radley, whose mere memory cast a “malevolent phantom” overshadowing his corner of the neighborhood. Judging by his tracks, he was "about six-and-a-half feet tall, blood-stained, scar-faced and drooling." His life story could be replayed with a single prop of a pair of scissors put to use in an alarming manner. But his isolation gave him ears to hear the cry of a child and he didn’t hesitate to respond.
• Tom Robinson, whose sympathies extended beyond racial barriers at the cost of his life.
• Mrs. Dubose, who overcame her pain.
• And Scout.
She said, “Hey Mr. Cunningham . . . Don’t you remember me? . . . I go to school with Walter. He’s your boy, ain’t he, sir? . . . Tell him hey for me won’t you?” and with those simple words she diffused mob action. Her light conversation reminded Mr. Cunningham of his shared humanity with the object of the mob’s intended aggression.

Who are my every day heroes? My husband who lives by the motto, “Happy wife, happy life.” My kids who help me laugh at life. My mother who, no matter how broken life felt in my youth, helped me fix it. Every day I’m touched by people with quiet, heroic qualities: determination, selfless service, staying the course, ingenuity, kindness.

Does this teach me anything I didn’t already know? Maybe not, but pondering the subject recommits me to dedicating each moment, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant to strive to be an every-day-hero. But I did find a secret to achieving that goal in Atticus Finch’s observation:
“So it took an eight-year-old child to bring ‘em to their senses, didn’t it?” said Atticus. “That proves something—that a gang of wild animals can be stopped, simply because they’re still human. . . . you children last night made Walter Cunningham stand in my shoes for a minute. That was enough.”

message 5: by Tara (new)

Tara (montaralin) | 4 comments I love your review Natasha. I also think Andrea's comment sums it up well. I loved this story. I had it read to me when I was young, and I'm sure I saw the movie somewhere along the way. I always remembered it as a good story, but I didn't fully remember why until I just re-read it recently. Technically, I listened to it on audio, twice through over about 3 weeks.

I find writing reviews on classics a little intimidating, but I want to put a few of my reactions down before I discuss this with my sisters' book club. Harper Lee does such an excellent job with descriptions. "On a summer's day, a black dog suffered..." or "It hung over us like smoke in a crowded room..." or comparing the need to read to the need to breathe.

Harper Lee broached an array of very tough topics, which I expect many in today's politically correct society would take issue with. But she painted the world the way it was at the time, and no, it was not right--which is exactly what she was trying to point out, and did well, I think.

I loved how realistically she portrayed the world from the view of a child, a little girl who spends all her days trying to keep up with a brother 4 years her senior, never wishing to be worthy of the worst insult ever, that of "acting like a girl." So much so, that the first time Jem suggests that she should start acting "more like a girl," she bursts into tears. Personally, I was not much like Scout (having only sisters to keep up with), but that doesn't make her any less real and lovable to me.

In this reading though, I especially loved Atticus Finch in all his wisdom and his strong belief in humanity. I have personally known people that have the same deep belief that most people are basically good and given the right circumstances would make good choices, so I find that aspect of his character believable too. The Atticus quote I want to remember and carry through my life is: "It's not time to worry yet." In other words, even when life appears to be at it's most overwhelming point, there is always a way through it.

message 6: by Natasha (new)

Natasha | 2 comments Tara wrote: "I love your review Natasha. I also think Andrea's comment sums it up well. ..."

Thanks for adding your thoughts. I love your insights. Now that you point it out, I see the phrase "It's not time to worry yet" jumps out often throughout the book.

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