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To Kill a Mockingbird: An Introduction

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To Kill a Mockingbird: An Introduction Boo Radley s house What will To Kill a Mockingbird make you think about? What can you learn from reading it? – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: To Kill a Mockingbird: An Introduction


1
To Kill a Mockingbird An Introduction
2
One of the most influential novels in American
history.
  • Rated, after the Bible, as one book most often
    cited as making a difference in peoples lives
  • Considered the one book every adult should read
    before they die by British librarians
  • Voted the Best Novel of the 20th century by
    readers of the Library Journal
  • Ranked fifth on the Modern Librarys Readers
    List of the 100 Best Novels in the English
    language since 1900

3
So whats so special about To Kill a Mockingbird?
4
Literature helps us to see with other eyes, to
imagine with other imaginations, to feel with
other hearts, as well as with our own.
C.S. Lewis
5
The book to read is not the one which thinks
for you, but the one which makes you think.
James McCosh
6
Reading---and thinking---requires careful
attention to detail
7
Pay careful attention to the butterfly in the
following picture
  • What is it flying to?
  • What color is it?

8
(No Transcript)
9
Pay careful attention to the woman in the
following picture
  • Is her eye open or closed?
  • What color is her lipstick?

10
(No Transcript)
11
You can learn to
  • . . . see things differently.

12
Questions to ask yourself while reading To Kill a
Mockingbird
  • What am I learning
  • to see with other eyes,
  • to imagine with other imaginations, and
  • to feel with other hearts?
  • What is this book making me think about?

13
The Author
  • Nelle Harper Lee, 34 year-old woman
  • Born (1926) and raised in Monroeville, AL
  • Daughter of Amasa Lee, a small-town lawyer and
    widower
  • Law school drop out, 1949
  • Childhood friend of author Truman Capote

14
The Setting
  • Maycomb, Alabama, a tiny (fictional) town, much
    like the real town of Monroeville.

15
small-town Alabama, 1930s
16
Courthouse Monroeville, Alabama
17
An Alabama Sharecroppers Home, 1936
18
African American church in Alabama in the 1930s
19
The Setting
  • Early 1930s, during the Great Depression

20
The Scottsboro Boys 1931-1937
  • Nine African American teenagers falsely
    accused of rape. The investigations and trials
    lasted 6 years

21
A white lawyer, Sam Leibowitz, defended the
accused boys.
22
The Dust Bowl in Oklahoma created problems . . .
  • and extreme poverty in every state in America.

23
Franklin D. Roosevelt succeeded Herbert Hoover as
President
24
King Kong, the hit movie of 1933
25
Lou Gerhig and Babe Ruth were the most famous
baseball players in America
26
America in the 1950s while Harper Lee was
writing To Kill a Mockingbird
27
Southern states opposed school integration
28
May 1954 Supreme Court Orders School Integration
29
August 1955 A 14 year-old Chicago boy, Emmett
Till,
  • is murdered in Mississippi

30
Tills killers are tried for murder
  • and are declared not guilty by an all-white
    jury.

31
The Characters
  • Narrator Scout Finch, six-year-old girl
  • Atticus Finch, Scouts father, widower,
    small-town lawyer
  • Jem Finch, Scouts older brother
  • Dill Harris, strange, pint-sized summer neighbor
  • Boo Radley, mysterious reclusive neighbor
  • Tom Robinson, African American man accused of
    rape
  • Bob Ewell, poor red-neck racist

32
Atticus teaches Scout an important lesson
33
The Story
  • Set in small-town Alabama in the 1930s
  • Spans three years
  • Narrated by Scout
  • 3 children learn about life by witnessing the
    complicated problems facing adults in their small
    Alabama town.

34
Boo Radleys house
35
What will To Kill a Mockingbird make you think
about?
  • What can you learn from reading it?

36
If you can learn a simple trick, Scout, youll
get along a lot better with all kinds of folks.
You never really understand a person until you
consider things from his point of view . . .
until you climb into his skin and walk around in
it. Atticus Finch, TKAM, p. 34
37
Whose skin will Scout get to climb into?
38
What kind of people do we need to understand?
39
Mockingbirds dont do one thing but make music
for us to enjoy. They dont eat up peoples
gardens, dont nest in corncribs, they dont do
one thing but sing their hears out for us.
Thats why its a sin to kill a
mockingbird. Miss Maudie, TKAM, page 94
40
Who will turn out to be the mockingbirds in
this story?
41
Who was excluded from mainstream American life
in the 1930s? The 1950s? The 2000s?
42
What will Scout and Jem learn about life and
about human nature?
43
Who will Scout---and you---learn . . .
  • to see differently?

44
To learn more about Harper Lee
45
PowerPoint presentation prepared by Chris Crowe,
Professor of English, Brigham Young University,
Provo, Utah.
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