History Literature / ToKillAMockingbird

8th Apr '17 1:23:52 PM Malady
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* WeatherReportNarration: A few paragraphs in you have, "Somehow, it was hotter then: a black dog suffered on a summer's day; bony mules hitched to Hoover carts flicked flies in the sweltering shade of the live oaks on the square."

to:

* WeatherReportNarration: WeatherReportOpening: A few paragraphs in you have, "Somehow, have
--> Somehow,
it was hotter then: a black dog suffered on a summer's day; bony mules hitched to Hoover carts flicked flies in the sweltering shade of the live oaks on the square."
2nd Mar '17 2:32:34 AM Zadia
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* ParentalIncest: Heavily implied when Mayella is explaining what really happened with Tom Robinson, she says she'd never kissed a grown man before, because what Papa did to her "don't count". That line was cut from the film for obvious reasons, but Mayella's actress Colin Wilcox-Paxton said she communicated the incestuous relationship through her body language and facial expressions. She revealed in the documentary that comes with the deluxe DVD set, that she was acutely aware that Mayella's experience was real. "I saw these girls on the streets of violence, these very underprivileged girls. These girls from awful, awful backgrounds. I mean, most of them took it for granted they'd be molested by the time they were... certainly 12, by a father, an uncle, a brother — or someone down the road."
* ParentalSubstitute: Calpurnia, who acts like a mother to Scout and Jem. Aunt Alexandra may also have tried to be this to the children.


Added DiffLines:

* ParentalIncest: Heavily implied when Mayella is explaining what really happened with Tom Robinson, she says she'd never kissed a grown man before, because what Papa did to her "don't count". That line was cut from the film for obvious reasons, but Mayella's actress Colin Wilcox-Paxton said she communicated the incestuous relationship through her body language and facial expressions. She revealed in the documentary that comes with the deluxe DVD set, that she was acutely aware that Mayella's experience was real. "I saw these girls on the streets of violence, these very underprivileged girls. These girls from awful, awful backgrounds. I mean, most of them took it for granted they'd be molested by the time they were... certainly 12, by a father, an uncle, a brother — or someone down the road."
* ParentalSubstitute: Calpurnia, who acts like a mother to Scout and Jem. Aunt Alexandra may also have tried to be this to the children.
* ParentsAsPeople: Dill's. They tell him they love him and get him whatever he wants, but fail to actually spend any time with him, instead constantly telling him to go play with the toys they brought him. Eventually he has enough and runs back to Maycomb.
16th Feb '17 5:02:45 AM EmmaWhite
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* AmbiguouslyGay: Dill, who was based on Harper Lee's childhood friend, the openly gay Creator/TrumanCapote. Dill makes a ChildhoodMarriagePromise with Scout and kisses her when he thinks her brother isn't looking, but as he grows up, he is much more interested in spending time with her brother and at one point, explains why Jem doesn't have his pants by lying that he'd won them off him]] in a game of StripPoker.
12th Feb '17 2:01:59 PM CumbersomeTercel
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Added DiffLines:

* LudicrousPrecision: When asked by the judge during Tom Robinson's trial, Mayella Ewell gives her age as "nineteen-and-a-half." The fact that a nineteen-year-old still thinks of her age in halves serves to show that she doesn't get out as much as she should.
9th Feb '17 5:52:24 PM SoapheadChurch
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* AmbiguouslyGay: Dill, who was based on Harper Lee's childhood friend, the openly gay Creator/TrumanCapote. Dill makes a ChildhoodMarriagePromise with Scout and kisses her when he thinks her brother isn't looking, but as he grows up, he is much more interested in spending time with her brother and at one point, explains why Jem doesn't have his pants by [[SugarWiki/FunnyMoments lying that he'd won them off him]] in a game of StripPoker.

to:

* AmbiguouslyGay: Dill, who was based on Harper Lee's childhood friend, the openly gay Creator/TrumanCapote. Dill makes a ChildhoodMarriagePromise with Scout and kisses her when he thinks her brother isn't looking, but as he grows up, he is much more interested in spending time with her brother and at one point, explains why Jem doesn't have his pants by [[SugarWiki/FunnyMoments lying that he'd won them off him]] in a game of StripPoker.



** Whilst not quite as [[SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome awesome]] as the above example, Scout and Jem's neighbour Mr. Avery manages to get one when he tries to help when Miss Maudie's house catches fire.

to:

** Whilst not quite as [[SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome awesome]] awesome as the above example, Scout and Jem's neighbour Mr. Avery manages to get one when he tries to help when Miss Maudie's house catches fire.



* ShamingTheMob: Scout's SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome, where she got a lynch mob to disperse by speaking calmly to them, [[InnocentInaccurate apparently oblivious to the seriousness of the situation]].

to:

* ShamingTheMob: Scout's SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome, shining moment, where she got a lynch mob to disperse by speaking calmly to them, [[InnocentInaccurate apparently oblivious to the seriousness of the situation]].
9th Feb '17 2:11:20 PM MarsJenkar
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* KangarooCourt: It's obvious that Tom Robinson's guilt was determined far in advance of the trial. His jury even includes members of the lynch mob that tried to kill him in prison.

to:

* KangarooCourt: It's obvious that Tom Robinson's guilt was determined far in advance of the trial. His jury even includes members of the lynch mob that tried to kill him in prison. Oddly enough, this is ''entirely'' because of the jury; Judge Taylor and the prosecutor actually try to make the trial as fair as possible (Judge Taylor actively points out contradictions in the case, and the prosecutor seems to be holding back). Even with the jury bias, the deliberations take longer than expected due to a rogue juror.
1st Feb '17 7:19:31 PM SoapheadChurch
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* UsefulNotes/AcademyAward: The film was nominated for 8 Oscars (including Best Picture and Best Director), and took home 3 of them, including Best Actor for Creator/GregoryPeck, and Best Adapted Screenplay.



* ArchEnemy: Bob Ewell to Atticus Finch and Tom Robinson.



* BigDamnHeroes: [[spoiler:Boo Radley saving the siblings!]]

to:

* BigDamnHeroes: BigDamnHeroes:
**
[[spoiler:Boo Radley saving the siblings!]]



* ChekhovsGun: Chekhov spends roughly ten chapters boasting about the gun he keeps on his mantle.



* ChildrenAreInnocent: Scout and Jem's relatively innocent personalities and their father's liberal influence means that they don't fully comprehend the systemic racism in their town. Jem's naïve confidence that Tom will be acquitted is the biggest example.
** It's the reason for the books NonPOVProtagonist. We can see Tom's trial through the eyes of Scout, who lacks the cynicism and casual racism of the adults and see how tragic and incomprehensible it really is.
* ClearTheirName: The main plot and an iconic example in [[UsefulNotes/TheUnitedStates American]] literature. It's all the more tragic because [[spoiler:Atticus proves Tom innocent so conclusively that pretty much EVERYONE knows the truth -- but he's convicted, sentenced and ultimately killed while trying to escape ''just because he's black'']]. The circumstances of his death are different in the movie: [[spoiler:Tom doesn't even make it to the sentencing, dying after getting struck by what was supposed to be just a warning shot as he escaped the vehicle that was taking him back to the prison to await sentencing, since he didn't believe that the sheriff would be able to keep him safe]].

to:

* ChildrenAreInnocent: Scout and Jem's relatively innocent personalities and their father's liberal influence means that they don't fully comprehend the systemic racism in their town. Jem's naïve confidence that Tom will be acquitted is the biggest example.
**
example. It's the reason for the books NonPOVProtagonist. We can see Tom's trial through the eyes of Scout, who lacks the cynicism and casual racism of the adults and see how tragic and incomprehensible it really is.
* ClearTheirName: The main plot and an iconic example in [[UsefulNotes/TheUnitedStates American]] American literature. It's all the more tragic because [[spoiler:Atticus Atticus proves Tom innocent so conclusively that pretty much EVERYONE knows the truth -- but he's convicted, sentenced and ultimately killed while trying to escape ''just because he's black'']]. black''. The circumstances of his death are different in the movie: [[spoiler:Tom [[spoiler: Tom doesn't even make it to the sentencing, dying after getting struck by what was supposed to be just a warning shot as he escaped the vehicle that was taking him back to the prison to await sentencing, since he didn't believe that the sheriff would be able to keep him safe]].



* CoolOldGuy: Atticus Finch. He's obviously also a MagnificentBastard, minus the Bastard part. Hell, one of his responses to an argument is something along the lines of stating "You think you're about to win?", which he only said when he knew he would win an argument, or had a back up plan for what they were about to say. He's the model of a father that every child wants.
* CoolOldLady: Mrs. Dubose. At least, Atticus tries to get the children to see her as one. Scout and Jem prefer the good-natured Miss Maudie, who is admittedly pretty cool. Scout eventually comes to see Aunt Alexandra as one, when Alexandra stands up for Atticus at the ladies' meeting.

to:

* CoolOldGuy: Atticus Finch. He's obviously also a MagnificentBastard, minus the Bastard part. Hell, one of his responses to an argument is something along the lines of stating "You think you're about to win?", which he only said when he knew he would win an argument, or had a back up plan for what they were about to say. He's the model of a father that every child wants.
* CoolOldLady: Mrs. Dubose. At least, Atticus tries to get the children to see her as one. Scout and Jem prefer the good-natured Miss Maudie, who is admittedly pretty cool. Scout eventually comes to see Aunt Alexandra as one, when Alexandra stands up for Atticus at the ladies' meeting.
wants.



* HoldingTheFloor: Atticus has to give a filibuster in court...because, well, he's a lawyer. An incredibly awesome speech it is, too.



* HumansAreFlawed: One of the book's many points is to show that while ''some'' people are ''huge'' bastards, there are also plenty who are kindhearted and altruistic, such as Atticus Finch. It also shows that [[HeelFaceTurn people are capable of change]], such as [[spoiler:Mr. Cunningham, who was implied to be the only member of the jury to originally vote "innocent" before being swayed to the guilty side after several hours]], and that some humans get a reputation of being bastards when they really are some of the noblest, such as [[spoiler: Boo Radley]].

to:

* HumansAreFlawed: One of the book's many points is to show that while ''some'' some people are ''huge'' bastards, there are also plenty who are kindhearted and altruistic, such as Atticus Finch. It also shows that [[HeelFaceTurn people are capable of change]], such as [[spoiler:Mr. Cunningham, who was implied to be the only member of the jury to originally vote "innocent" before being swayed to the guilty side after several hours]], and that some humans get a reputation of being bastards when they really are some of the noblest, such as [[spoiler: Boo Radley]].



* ITakeOffenseToThatLastOne: Jem is worried about a gang coming after his father, and Atticus assures him that there have never been any gangs in Maycomb. Jem says the Ku Klux Klan "got after some Catholics one time." Atticus says, "Never heard of any Catholics in Maycomb either."



* LudicrousPrecision: When asked by the judge during Tom Robinson's trial, Mayella Ewell gives her age as "nineteen-and-a-half." The fact that a nineteen-year-old still thinks of her age in halves serves to show that she doesn't get out as much as she should.



* {{Mammy}}: Possibly Calpurnia.
* ManInWhite: Atticus Finch is a good guy in a white suit. Of course, he's a Southerner, although neither fat nor sweaty.
* MartialPacifist: Atticus. His children's hot tempers and constant scrapping are an aggravation to him, and he has no interest in having his honour defended. He believes in the law, and his courtroom manner is polite and gracious even to opposing witnesses who are clearly hostile towards him. Also, he can kill a charging rabid dog with one shot right between the eyes (maybe a little to the right) because the sheriff doesn't think he can make the shot at that distance. Note that this means that with a mad dog charging towards him ''and his children'', his hands don't shake in the slightest.



* MostWritersAreAdults: The book has been accused of using the "cute precocious kid" device to get away with having six-/seven-/eight-year-old Scout know and think things she really probably wouldn't, no matter how smart she was and how much Atticus told her about practicing law. And then there's Dill's philosophizing; you could argue that he's not really supposed to understand the full reach of some of the things he says, but a lot of the time he just sounds a little too knowing. On the other hand, Scout is supposed to be recalling the plot rather than describing it as it happens, so some at least of the precociousness can be explained by her either "tidying up" what was said or thought through the lens of a rational adult, or simply wrongly attributing stuff in hindsight.



* ParentalIncest: Heavily implied when Mayella is explaining what really happened with Tom Robinson, she says she'd never kissed a grown man before, because what Papa did to her "don't count".
** That line was cut from the film for obvious reasons, but Mayella's actress Colin Wilcox-Paxton said she communicated the incestuous relationship through her body language and facial expressions. She revealed in the documentary that comes with the deluxe DVD set, that she was acutely aware that Mayella's experience was real. "I saw these girls on the streets of violence, these very underprivileged girls. These girls from awful, awful backgrounds. I mean, most of them took it for granted they'd be molested by the time they were... certainly 12, by a father, an uncle, a brother — or someone down the road."

to:

* ParentalIncest: Heavily implied when Mayella is explaining what really happened with Tom Robinson, she says she'd never kissed a grown man before, because what Papa did to her "don't count".
**
count". That line was cut from the film for obvious reasons, but Mayella's actress Colin Wilcox-Paxton said she communicated the incestuous relationship through her body language and facial expressions. She revealed in the documentary that comes with the deluxe DVD set, that she was acutely aware that Mayella's experience was real. "I saw these girls on the streets of violence, these very underprivileged girls. These girls from awful, awful backgrounds. I mean, most of them took it for granted they'd be molested by the time they were... certainly 12, by a father, an uncle, a brother — or someone down the road."



* PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad: Atticus asks Scout not to say "nigger" because "it's common," meaning this.



* RealLifeWritesThePlot: [[spoiler:Believe it or not, ''Go Set a Watchman'', the first full-length novel written by Harper Lee (which wasn't published until 2015), portrayed Atticus as a bigot. His retroactive change between then and this novel can be attributed to the evolving views of Lee's own father, Amasa.]]

to:

* RealLifeWritesThePlot: [[spoiler:Believe Believe it or not, ''Go Set a Watchman'', the first full-length novel written by Harper Lee (which wasn't published until 2015), portrayed Atticus as a bigot. His retroactive change between then and this novel can be attributed to the evolving views of Lee's own father, Amasa.]]



* SesquipedalianSmith: Atticus Finch.



** That's more of him being an ActualPacifist until it is necessary to [[ShootTheDog put down a rabid dog]]. His real display of courage comes when he defends a black man accused of raping a white woman in a DeepSouth town in the 1930s. Doing this leaves him alienated from many of his peers, and he later has to face down a lynch mob (who included some of his friends,) to protect his client and gets publicly spat on by his opponent (who he then refuses to fight). He knew all of this would happen, and he took the job anyway. There is a reason why this pacifistic, soft-spoken lawyer beat Franchise/IndianaJones to first place on the American Film Institute's list of heroes.



* SuddenlyVoiced: Boo Radley spoke only one, barely audible line at the conclusion of the novel: "Will you take me home?" (This is due to years of social isolation and crippling shyness rather than inability to talk.) In the film version, however, Robert Duvall plays the character as completely silent.



* TallPoppySyndrome: Atticus complains that "All men are equal" has led to schoolteachers who promote all students instead of holding back underachievers.



* TurnTheOtherCheek: Atticus ''tries'' this on Bob Ewell. Since Bob is a blatant monster, [[spoiler:[[RevengeByProxy it backfires.]]]]

to:

* TurnTheOtherCheek: Atticus ''tries'' this on Bob Ewell. Since Bob is a blatant monster, [[spoiler:[[RevengeByProxy it backfires.]]]]



* WhoopiEpiphanySpeech: Gosh, whenever Scout or Jem say anything at or near the end of a chapter, it's one of these. Often, it's really hard-hitting too.
1st Feb '17 2:44:47 PM CumbersomeTercel
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* ArchEnemy: Bob Ewell to Atticus Finch and Tom Robinson.



* DeathByAdaptation: [[spoiler:In the film, Tom Robinson is shot and killed by police on the night of his conviction. In the novel, he dies while trying to escape from prison several months later]].



* DisproportionateRetribution: [[spoiler:When Atticus Finch embarrasses Bob Ewell at the trial, Bob Ewell takes revenge by trying to murder Atticus's children]].



* LowerClassLout: The Ewells.

to:

* LittleGirlsKickShins: Subverted. Scout tries to do this. In the book she's surprised to see her victim fall back in real pain — "I had meant to kick his shin, but aimed too high."
* LonersAreFreaks: Boo Radley is seen as this by the rest of the town. He is a kind and caring, if not shy person who just happens to have been a recluse.
* LowerClassLout: The Ewells. Filthy in both hygiene and morals, they live in an extension of the town dump, put only the barest amount of effort in, and treat everybody like garbage.
* LudicrousPrecision: When asked by the judge during Tom Robinson's trial, Mayella Ewell gives her age as "nineteen-and-a-half." The fact that a nineteen-year-old still thinks of her age in halves serves to show that she doesn't get out as much as she should.



* {{Mammy}}: Possibly Calpurnia.



* MartialPacifist: Atticus. His children's hot tempers and constant scrapping are an aggravation to him, and he has no interest in having his honour defended. He believes in the law, and his courtroom manner is polite and gracious even to opposing witnesses who are clearly hostile towards him. Also, he can kill a charging rabid dog with one shot right between the eyes (maybe a little to the right) because the sheriff doesn't think he can make the shot at that distance. Note that this means that with a mad dog charging towards him ''and his children'', his hands don't shake in the slightest.



* MisplacedKindergartenTeacher: Miss Caroline manages to be this even though she is teaching very young kids. The problem is that most of them are the children of farmers and have done manual labor pretty much since they could walk, so they're not really interested in the story of Mrs. Cat and her kittens. She gets a nasty shock when she meets one of the Ewells, a family who traditionally show up for the first day of school to satisfy the truant officer and hardly set foot in town the rest of the year. She tries to apply basic school rules to the kid and ends up getting "slut" screamed at her.



* MostWritersAreAdults: The book has been accused of using the "cute precocious kid" device to get away with having six-/seven-/eight-year-old Scout know and think things she really probably wouldn't, no matter how smart she was and how much Atticus told her about practicing law. And then there's Dill's philosophizing; you could argue that he's not really supposed to understand the full reach of some of the things he says, but a lot of the time he just sounds a little too knowing. On the other hand, Scout is supposed to be recalling the plot rather than describing it as it happens, so some at least of the precociousness can be explained by her either "tidying up" what was said or thought through the lens of a rational adult, or simply wrongly attributing stuff in hindsight.
* MrExposition: Scout takes on this role. Even her brother Jem is more a part of the plot than she is.



* MysteriousMiddleInitial: Bob Ewell is named after the famous Southern general Robert E. Lee. Whilst Lee's middle name was Edward, Ewell's full name is actually "Robert E. Lee Ewell".
* NaiveNewcomer: Dill is a way to introduce to the reader the secrets and history of a self-contained and private community and family.



* NoMedicationForMe: Beautifully inverted. When Mrs. Dubose, an elderly neighbor, calls Atticus a "nigger-lover," Jem destroys some of her flowers as a result, and as punishment, Atticus makes the boy read aloud to her every day for a month. After the punishment ends and Mrs. Dubose passes away, Atticus reveals that not only was Mrs. Dubose dying of a terminal illness, but she had become addicted to morphine to relieve the pain. She was so determined to die as herself that she stopped taking the medicine; the horrible withdrawal symptoms were only eased by Jem reading to and distracting her. Atticus says that to deny the morphine and die painfully, but clear of mind, is the bravest thing he has ever known.



* NosyNeighbour: As far as Stephanie Crawford is concerned, she absolutely must know everything.



* NotQuiteTheRightThing: Directly invoked. [[spoiler:After Boo Radley kills a drunken, murderous Bob Ewell in defense of Atticus's children, Atticus is all set to get the authorities involved and begin processing the matter by-the-book. The local sheriff, however, warns him that it's an open-and-shut case of self defense, Bob Ewell is widely known and hated, and Boo Radley's extreme social phobias would make the resulting trial absolute hell for him, however pure and innocent Atticus's intentions might be. The sheriff therefore 'officially concludes' that Bob Ewell got drunk, slipped, and fell on his own knife]].



* ObjectTrackingShot: The camera pans around the childrens' box of gifts from Boo Radley in the opening credits.



* OneLetterName: X Billups. Most people didn't believe that was his full name until he was asked to spell it during a court case.
* OneOfTheBoys: Scout's real name is Jean Louise but she prefers the nickname "Scout", she plays with boys, hates dresses and considers "you act like a girl" an insult.



* OutOfGenreExperience:
** The genre of the novel is probably best described as "coming of age". In the middle of it is a courtroom drama. There are some other crime elements scattered throughout, but it would be misleading to describe it as a crime or law novel.
** The film has a higher focus on the courtroom scene and won the award "Best Courtroom Drama" from the American Film Institute. And [[ShownTheirWork the American Bar Association]].
* OverprotectiveDad: The description of Finch's Landing mentions that its original owner designed the upstairs so that the son's bedroom would be accessible by one staircase, and the daughters' bedrooms only by another... which took you directly through the parents' room.
* ParentalIncest: Heavily implied when Mayella is explaining what really happened with Tom Robinson, she says she'd never kissed a grown man before, because what Papa did to her "don't count".
** That line was cut from the film for obvious reasons, but Mayella's actress Colin Wilcox-Paxton said she communicated the incestuous relationship through her body language and facial expressions. She revealed in the documentary that comes with the deluxe DVD set, that she was acutely aware that Mayella's experience was real. "I saw these girls on the streets of violence, these very underprivileged girls. These girls from awful, awful backgrounds. I mean, most of them took it for granted they'd be molested by the time they were... certainly 12, by a father, an uncle, a brother — or someone down the road."



* PickOnSomeoneYourOwnSize:
** Mrs. Dubose.
** [[spoiler:Bob Ewell attacking Scout]].
* ThePigPen: Burris Ewell.



* PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad: Atticus asks Scout not to say "nigger" because "it's common," meaning this.



* ProtectedByAChild: When an angry lynch mob shows up to kill Tom Robinson in the middle of night, Atticus is waiting for them so he can try to argue some sense, but he fails and they threaten to go through him if he won't step aside. Fortunately, Scout snuck out and followed him that night. Her sudden appearance and apparent innocent lack of understanding of the situation (greeting the men warmly and asking about how their kids are doing since school ended for the summer) takes all the steam out of them and they are too ashamed to carry out their violent intentions. As Atticus puts it later, she reminded them they were (good) men and not a mob.
* PullTheThread: Atticus successfully pulls many threads in the Ewells' story of how Tom raped Mayella, particularly in the disparity of Mayella's bruise and Tom's handicap [[spoiler: but the all-white jury ends up finding him guilty anyway.]]



* PuppyLove: Scout and Dill—although it's rather ambiguous if they acutely have crushes on each other, or are just claiming they do as part of acting grown up.



* RetiredBadass: Again, Atticus.

to:

* RetiredBadass: Again, Atticus. His children were unaware of his badass marksmanship, until a dangerous mad dog wanders into town and someone needs to be able to safely put it down.
* RetiredGunfighter: Atticus was an excellent shot, but hating killing things and wouldn't even touch a gun. He does have to use one to kill a rabid dog, however.



* RomanAClef: The story is based on Harper Lee's childhood as well as the Scottsboro Trials.



* ScareDare: The Radley house is an iconic example.
* ScaryBlackMan: Tom Robinson is accused of this. Of course, it's wrong.
* ScaryMinoritySuspect: Tom Robinson. Although he is a very nice man who isn't scary in the least, and of course, is completely innocent. However, most of Maycomb assume he is a scary minority suspect who did rape Mayella because of the prevailing racist attitudes of the time.
* SchoolIsForLosers: Scout thinks school is utterly useless, and spends a while trying to convince her father to let her stay home, since he never went to a day of formal school as a kid and managed to become a lawyer anyway. In all fairness to her, her town's school system is pretty ridiculous — her first-grade teacher is annoyed that she already knows how to read and write, and tells her she needs to stop doing both until she reaches the appropriate grade level. Needless to say, she's not pleased, and tries a number of things to get out of going to school, including briefly becoming LadySwearsALot in the hope that her father won't make her go anymore once he finds out she learned it from other kids. (It doesn't work; if anything, he seems to find it slightly amusing.)
* ScrewPolitenessImASenior: Mrs. Dubose casts aspersions on the entire neighborhood, but Atticus tells his children to leave the poor, sick, old woman alone. Then again, that probably has more to do with his general decency than anything else. Well that and the fact that he had some admiration for her since [[spoiler: she was addicted to morphine and trying to quit before she died of the disease she had. Dying slowly and very painfully instead of easily without pain if she had just stayed on it. That takes guts]].
* SesquipedalianSmith: Atticus Finch.



* ShootTheDog : A literal example with Atticus Finch and Tim Johnson

to:

* ShootTheDog : ShearMenace: Boo Radley is said to have nonchalantly stabbed his father in the leg with scissors while clipping articles from a newspaper, followed by wiping the blood off on his pants, and continuing to clip the newspaper.
* SheCleansUpNicely: Subverted. When Mayella arrives at the trial, her poverty does not allow her to dress up nicely, but it's clear she's taken care to wash and groom herself the best she can. This is in contrast to her father, who looks like someone took a scrub brush to him. In the film version, she wears a shabby dress and bow in her hair, and the effect is [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44TG_H_oY2E quite sad]]. During an interview on the DVD extras, the actress states that wardrobe wanted her wear high heels. She said she would, if she could wear socks. When wardrobe told her no one wears socks with high heels, she told them "They do where I come from."
* ShootTheDog:
A literal example with Atticus Finch and Tim Johnson



* SkinnyDipping: Implied. Jem won't take Scout to a pond with him and Dill, because they prefer to skinny-dip.



* SnowedIn: The kids get the day off from school because of a light snowfall, a rarity in Alabama.
* TheSoCalledCoward: Atticus refuses to teach his children to shoot, leaving that to Uncle Jack. Turns out he's a pretty good shot himself.
** That's more of him being an ActualPacifist until it is necessary to [[ShootTheDog put down a rabid dog]]. His real display of courage comes when he defends a black man accused of raping a white woman in a DeepSouth town in the 1930s. Doing this leaves him alienated from many of his peers, and he later has to face down a lynch mob (who included some of his friends,) to protect his client and gets publicly spat on by his opponent (who he then refuses to fight). He knew all of this would happen, and he took the job anyway. There is a reason why this pacifistic, soft-spoken lawyer beat Franchise/IndianaJones to first place on the American Film Institute's list of heroes.
* SouthernFriedGenius / SouthernGentleman: Atticus Finch, though he certainly doesn't exhibit any real southern stereotypes, at least no negative stereotypes. He's sort of the genteel southern elite, an erudite, upper class Southern gentleman. Fortunately for his children and his client, he also displays an educated, liberal tolerance and gentility as well. He ''is'' a crack shot with a rifle, though he tries to keep that fact away from his children.
* SouthernGothic: The story has elements of this, as well as being set in the DeepSouth.
* SpitShake: The teacher Miss Caroline asks Scout to hold out her hand (intending to hit her with a ruler as punishment), and Scout wonders to herself "what bargain [they] had made" as she thought "she was going to spit in it, which was the only reason anybody in Maycomb held out his hand: it was a time-honored method of sealing oral contracts". Is referenced again in the following chapter during a scene with her father, Atticus.
* SpitefulSpit: Bob Ewell spits on Atticus when the lawyer decides that he will defend Tom Robinson in court.



* StripPoker: Referenced when Atticus demands to know why Jem isn't wearing pants (after he loses them while sneaking around the Radley property), Dill lies and says he won them off him in a game of strip poker and accidentally left them there.
* SuddenlyVoiced: Boo Radley spoke only one, barely audible line at the conclusion of the novel: "Will you take me home?" (This is due to years of social isolation and crippling shyness rather than inability to talk.) In the film version, however, Robert Duvall plays the character as completely silent.
* SupportingProtagonist: Scout. Most people agree that the true hero of the story is her father, Atticus.
* SweetHomeAlabama: The story takes a nuanced view. The central plot (and title) of the book centers precisely around racism and the less-savory aspects of Southern society, but many characters in the book are perfectly sympathetic, kindly folk.



* TallPoppySyndrome: Atticus complains that "All men are equal" has led to schoolteachers who promote all students instead of holding back underachievers.



* ThereIsNoHigherCourt: DoubleSubverted. Atticus Finch was going to appeal Tom's case, but [[spoiler:Tom was shot to death, [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch allegedly for trying to escape]].]]
* TheyreCalledPersonalIssuesForAReason: The sheriff makes the case for this on Boo Radley's behalf, arguing against making a heroic deed of his known to the rest of the town on the basis that he really does just want to be left alone and would not appreciate even exposure to public praise. Everyone else concedes the wisdom of this, and the exact nature of his DarkAndTroubledPast is never made clear, which suggests this is the author's opinion as well.



* TomboyishName: Scout, which is her nickname — her full name is Jean Louise Finch. Needless to say, you only find that out in scenes where her aunt is trying to put her in dresses or other "formal" settings are happening.



* TurnTheOtherCheek: Atticus ''tries'' this on Bob Ewell. Since Bob is a blatant monster, [[spoiler: [[RevengeByProxy it backfires.]] ]]

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* TurnTheOtherCheek: Atticus ''tries'' this on Bob Ewell. Since Bob is a blatant monster, [[spoiler: [[RevengeByProxy [[spoiler:[[RevengeByProxy it backfires.]] ]]]]]]



* UnwillinglyGirlyTomboy: Scout is more or less a tomboy, but has to wear a dress for her first day of school thanks to her Aunt Alexandra, and seems mildly embarrassed about it.
* UrineTrouble: One of the characters urinated off his front porch. This is not shown in the film adaptation (thankfully).



* WackyAmericansHaveWackyNames: Several examples, with the prize going to X Billups, who has no given name other than X.



* WeatherReportNarration: A few paragraphs in you have, "Somehow, it was hotter then: a black dog suffered on a summer's day; bony mules hitched to Hoover carts flicked flies in the sweltering shade of the live oaks on the square."



* WhoopiEpiphanySpeech: Gosh, whenever Scout or Jem say anything at or near the end of a chapter, it's one of these. Often, it's really hard-hitting too.




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* WoundedGazelleGambit: Subverted. Mayella claims she was raped when, in fact, it was the opposite, in order to get rid of her guilt about kissing a black man.
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* AcquittedTooLate: Tom Robinson ends up being found guilty, despite the best efforts of Atticus to try to convince the juries not to convict him because he's an African American. Atticus tries to get a re-trial, but Tom is killed while trying to escape prison before he can.


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* AlcoholicParent: Bob Ewell.


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* ArmorPiercingQuestion: A group of men ready to lynch Tom is stopped dead by Scout when she asks one of them how his entailment (i.e.: an inheritance problem) is coming along. In this case, it's not specifically the question that's armor-piercing so much is that it's coming from the innocent young daughter of Tom's defense lawyer -- it breaks the men out of their mob mentality and they quickly disperse in embarrassment, much to the confusion of Scout, who was only trying to make small talk.


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* AstonishinglyAppropriateInterruption: From the gossip at a ladies' missionary circle meeting: "Yes sir, Mrs. Perkins, that J. Grimes Everett is a martyred saint, he... needed to get married so they ran... to the beauty parlor every Saturday afternoon... soon as the sun goes down. He goes to bed with the... chickens, a crate full of sick chickens, Fred says that’s what started it all. Fred says...”
* AteHisGun: Dolphus Raymond's fiancée does this on their wedding day.


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* BarefootPoverty: Walter Cunningham. As a result of going barefooted in barnyards, he also gets hookworms. Scout notes that plenty of the farm kids wear shoes the first day of school and discard them until it gets cold.


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* CentralTheme: Racism-based conflict from a child's point of view.


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* ConsummateLiar: Dill lies effortlessly, but usually also thoughtlessly, resulting in ridiculous tall tales that he seems to nearly believe. When he does put his mind to it, he can weasel out of trouble this way.
* ConvictedByPublicOpinion: Invoked almost word for word by Atticus Finch. The public decided long before the trial that Tom Robinson, a black man, was guilty of raping Mayella Ewell, a white woman, because this was Alabama in the 1930s.
* CoolOldGuy: Atticus Finch. He's obviously also a MagnificentBastard, minus the Bastard part. Hell, one of his responses to an argument is something along the lines of stating "You think you're about to win?", which he only said when he knew he would win an argument, or had a back up plan for what they were about to say. He's the model of a father that every child wants.


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* CorruptionOfAMinor: Subverted. When Dill is crying during Tom's trial, he and Scout go outside and talk to Dolphus Raymond, the town's alcoholic. To help Dill stop crying, he offers him a drink out of his paper sack. Scout tries to warn Dill against it, but it turns out that it's just soda, and Raymond only pretends to be an alcoholic so the townsfolk can think that's the reason he lives with a black woman.
* CoversAlwaysLie: Downplayed. It is a divided book, with its first half being an episodic ComingOfAge story of a tomboyish girl in the South, and its second half being a focused narrative about the deepest ugliness of racial prejudice, class resentment, and pure human spite. Covers will either show a little girl (meant to be Scout, the narrator) or they'll be nonindicative of either plotline (for example, a tree.)


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* DeadpanSnarker: Atticus is an unusually benevolent version.
* DeathGlare: Atticus, in true [[TheSoCalledCoward So-Called Coward]] fashion, deploys a death glare now and then.
-->Atticus turned his head and pinned me to the wall with his good eye.


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* DeliveryStork: Dill tells Scout that you get babies from an island where they are gathered like flowers. Scout, who had previously been told that babies are dropped down the chimney by God, is skeptical.
* DeterminedDefeatist: Atticus knows full well that the racist jury will never acquit Tom Robinson, even if all evidence points to his innocence. He gives his all in defending him anyway, because no one else will, and it's the right thing to do.


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* DoesntLikeGuns: Atticus used to be called "Ol' One Shot" and used to be the "deadest shot in Maycomb County in his time"...but his children don't even realize he knows how to fire one until he has to shoot and kill a rabid dog.
* DontYouDarePityMe: The black Tom Robinson was almost certain to be convicted of the white Mayella Ewell's rape regardless of what he said, but he makes one serious mistake at his trial; the prosecutor asks him why he was constantly helping her around her house while turning down money (presumably trying to get Tom to say that he was attracted to her,) but Tom does something even worse by saying that he helped because he "felt right sorry for her". "You felt sorry for her? You felt sorry for her?" replies the prosecutor, causing both Tom and Atticus to immediately realise that the concept of a black man pitying a white woman will offend the jury so much that whatever extremely slim chance they might have had of acquittal has been lost, and Atticus' closing statement specifically draws attention to how having the "temerity" to pity a white woman is not reason enough to convict him.
* DoomedMoralVictor: Downplayed. Atticus was doomed to lose his case, not die. In doing so, though, he achieved the same goals of a martyr.
* DoubleInLawMarriage: Mentioned in an aside, although not actually featured. Atticus mentions the concept of double cousins to Scout, saying "two brothers married two sisters." She and Dill work on figuring it out, and reason that if Dill had a sister whom he married, and Jem and Scout got married, their kids would be double cousins. Only off by a little bit there...


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* DrunkOnMilk: Used by Dolphus Raymond the town drunk. He's often seen in public, tipsy and swigging from a bottle in a paper bag. The young protagonists eventually discover that it's actually a bottle of Coca-Cola, and he just pretends to be a drunkard so the bigoted townspeople won't harass his family over his marriage to a black woman.
* EthnicMenialLabor: Calpurnia. Her station in life was part of the book's dissection of racism in America. Calpurnia is treated as an equal member of the family and is written as a fully-fleshed-out human instead of as the flat "Mammy" stock character. She has a much bigger part in the book than in the film, which had to cut many scenes and subplots for time and many of Calpurnia's scenes were too. But her sensitive and important portrayal makes her one of the few examples of this type of role that does not create ValuesDissonance today.


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* EvilCounterpart: Bob Ewell is this to Atticus Finch and Boo Radley.
** Atticus is kind, compassionate man and loving father who tries to steer Jem and Scout away from the racism of Maycomb. Ewell is disgusting racist hick who neglects his family, abuses his children, [[spoiler: and pushes his daughter into having a black man's life destroyed]].
** Boo Radley is a recluse who hides from the world, while the world makes nasty rumors about him. Ewell himself starts attacking people after the town labels him public enemy #1 [[spoiler: and eventually tries to kill two children, only to be stopped by Boo Radley]].


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* FalseTeethTomfoolery: The children regard Miss Maudie's false teeth as an impressive distinction.


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* FatherIWantToMarryMyBrother: Atticus tells Scout about some people who were "double first cousins," resulting when "two sisters married two brothers." This is too much for Scout to wrap her mind around, and the closest she comes is guessing that if she married her brother Jem and their friend Dill married his sister, their children would be double first cousins.


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* FirstPersonPeripheralNarrator: Scout watches her father's heroic attempt to save Tom Robinson's life. Scout does have her own adventures, but Atticus is the real man of action.


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* {{Foreshadowing}}:
** The novel spends an entire chapter detailing local racist Bob Ewell's attempts at getting revenge on everyone he blames for being outed as a liar (he had beaten his daughter after catching her trying to seduce a black man and forced her to accuse the innocent man of rape. Despite evidence of his innocence, the man was convicted and fatally shot trying to escape.), stalking the man's widow, the trial judge, and explicitly threatening the man's lawyer, Atticus Finch. In the next chapter, as Atticus' children prepare to go to a Halloween party, their aunt mentions an uneasy feeling, "Something just walked over my grave". The children are viciously attacked by Ewell on their way home, and it is all but stated that they would have been killed had someone not heard their screams and come to help.
** When Atticus, who has made it clear that he is adverse to violence, goes out into the neighborhood to "take care of" the rabid dog it foreshadows both his battle against the legal system and the climax of the book.


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* FullyClothedNudity: Scout gets shocked when Atticus loosens his tie and collar, because Atticus never loosens his clothing outside of his home.
* FunetikAksent: The book has some differences in pronunciation and word use to show not only characters' race and social class, but also the gap between children and adults — some speech patterns were okay for kids of Scout and Jem's background but would have to be dropped as they grew up — and what was appropriate in different situations. In one scene Scout and Jem go to Calpurnia's church with her and, on the way home, ask why she talked to the other black churchgoers in their own dialect when she "knows better."
* GentleGiant: Boo Radley. Throughout the majority of the novel, the kids have no idea what he looks like, and fear him greatly. The simple act of touching his house is a feat for them. But in the end, he's revealed to be a nice, timid, harmless man, as he saves Jem from Bob Ewell (albeit by killing him) and makes his appearance known. (Although, in the film version, he's really not so big.)


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* GoodLawyersGoodClients: Atticus defends Tom, but his opponent (the prosecutor) is portrayed as a good (if still somewhat bigoted) person who's just doing his job. Interestingly, the book mentions Atticus having defended obviously guilty people in the past, but because he's a good guy, he tried to make them PleaBargain.
* GoodParents: Atticus is a single parent example. He treats his children with nothing but love and respect, and a big part of his character is that he refuses to do anything that would lower himself in the eyes of Scout and Jem. For their part, his children adore him just as much, to the extent that they're willing to face down a lynch mob for him.
* GossipyHens: Miss Stephanie Crawford.


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* HoistByHisOwnPetard: Subverted. [[spoiler:It is '''officially claimed''' that Bob Ewell fell on his own knife, but actually Ewell was stabbed by Boo Radley as he was trying to kill the children]].
* HoldingTheFloor: Atticus has to give a filibuster in court...because, well, he's a lawyer. An incredibly awesome speech it is, too.
* HonorRelatedAbuse: Bob Ewell catches his daughter trying to seduce Tom Robinson (a black man). He reacts by beating the shit out of her and forcing her to testify that Tom Robinson raped her.


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* IdealHero: Atticus Finch represents the ideal of what a human should be: brutally honest, highly moral in all aspects of his life, a tireless crusader for good causes however hopeless, respected by everyone including his opponents, and a virtual pacifist.


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* ImprobableAimingSkills: Atticus, "The Deadest Shot in Maycomb County".
* InnocentBigot: Scout initially is like this due to being a young child who lives in the Deep South during the 1930s, and as a result does not seem to realize for instance that the n-word is offensive at first. As she grows older she realizes the effects of racism and prejudice and averts this trope.


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* InsaneEqualsViolent: Invoked, but averted. Boo Radley isn't violent (and may or may not be insane), but the reader's introduction to him is via a story where he stabbed his father with scissors with no provocation.


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* InvulnerableKnuckles: Scout splits her knuckle to the bone punching out her cousin.
* ITakeOffenseToThatLastOne: Jem is worried about a gang coming after his father, and Atticus assures him that there have never been any gangs in Maycomb. Jem says the Ku Klux Klan "got after some Catholics one time." Atticus says, "Never heard of any Catholics in Maycomb either."


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* KnightInSourArmor: Atticus is utterly and correctly convinced that, because of Maycomb County's inherent racism, Tom Robinson cannot escape being convicted for a crime he didn't commit. Atticus still does everything in his power to get Tom acquitted, and treats it as the most important case of his entire career despite the reaction from the people of Maycomb County.


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* NonIndicativeTitle: The story has nothing to do with killing mockingbirds or hunting at all. There is, however, a TitleDrop.
* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: The whole story revolves around a good deed that is punished, namely Atticus making the unpopular decision to defend a black man who has been falsely accused. Even more so the reason that the black man is in trouble in the first place was because he did a number of good deeds for a troubled young white woman because he felt pity for her.


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* ObfuscatingStupidity: Dolphus Raymond channels this, carrying around a bottle of what everyone thinks is whiskey in a brown paper bag (it's actually Coca Cola) and drinking from it. People use alcoholism to justify his "strange" behavior (being a white man married to a black woman in Alabama in the early 20th century).


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* PunchClockVillain: Scout-as-narrator explains that children of lawyers often assume that whatever colleague their parent goes up against in court is a bad guy, only to be mystified by the sight of them acting like friends when court's not in session. By the time of Tom Robinson's trial, Scout and Jem have outgrown this, and they're familiar enough with the prosecutor, Mr. Gilmer, to recognize and appreciate the tricks he employs, all in the spirit of a fair trial. Neither of them is quite old enough to realize until the guilty verdict that that's not what's going on this time, and for the case of a black man accused of raping a white woman, no one's bothered hitting any punch clock.


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* TellMeAboutMyFather: At one point, Scout asks Jem about her mother as they're falling asleep.
1st Feb '17 10:34:05 AM CumbersomeTercel
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* BadassBaritone: Atticus, as played by Gregory Peck.



* CompletelyDifferentTitle: "Alabama Story" in Japan, "The Darkness Beyond the Hedge" in Italy, "The Sun Rises For Everyone" in Brazil.

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* CompletelyDifferentTitle: "Alabama Story" in Japan, "The Darkness Beyond CompositeCharacter: In the Hedge" film, Miss Rachel (Dill's alcoholic aunt) and Miss Stephanie (the town gossip) were merged so that Stephanie became Dill's aunt. Nathan Radley Sr. and Jr. were also combined, though given how minor both are this doesn't affect the plot in Italy, "The Sun Rises For Everyone" in Brazil.any meaningful way.


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* HeyCatch: Atticus throws a drinking glass at Tom to show that Tom can't use his left hand, so couldn't have attacked Mayella Ewell.


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* ManInWhite: Atticus Finch is a good guy in a white suit. Of course, he's a Southerner, although neither fat nor sweaty.


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* NostalgicMusicbox: The film has a music-box-like theme at the beginning. Music/ElmerBernstein said he wanted the music to sound very pure and innocent.


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* SlouchOfVillainy: The lawyer for the prosecution slouches with one leg over the arm of his chair.


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* StoicSpectacles: Atticus wears a pair.


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* TimeshiftedActor: In the film, the voice of Scout as an adult narrator was done by Kim Stanley, while Scout as a child was played by Mary Badham.


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* TranslationMatchmaking: The Japanese release of the film became "The Alabama Story", almost definitely patterned off of ''Film/ThePhiladelphiaStory''.
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