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50 Essay Topics for the Most SparkNoted Books

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

36. Throughout the novel, the mockingbird is a symbol of innocence. Examine three characters that could be considered mockingbirds, and what fundamental truths each of these characters reveal about the world.

37. In chapter 1, Scout characterizes Boo Radley as a “malevolent phantom.” What changes? Why does Scout no longer fear him by the end? Trace the development of Scout’s understanding of malevolence. When and how does Scout encounter true evil?

38. Atticus Finch is widely respected, both within the confines of the novel and outside of it. (He’s routinely ranked as one of the most inspiring literary characters of all time.) Examine his role as a parent and as a member of the community. Does he have any flaws?

39. What is the relationship between justice and fairness in the novel? Do they mean the same thing? Are the terms mutually exclusive? Is there overlap between the two?

40. Examine the affects of racism in Maycomb and the various ways in which the characters are impacted (either positively or negatively) by the color of their skin. For instance, would Tom Robinson receive a fair trial if he were white? Would there be a trial at all? At the end of the novel, Sheriff Tate is unwilling to file charges against Boo Radley. Would he have done the same if Boo had been black?

Topics: Books
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