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Loss of Innocence in To Kill a Mockingbird

            "To Kill A Mockingbird", by Harper Lee is an invigorating novel published in 1960. It was immediately successful, winning the Pulitzer Prize, and since has become a classic of American literature. The novel takes place in the setting of Maycomb County, an imaginary district in Southern Alabama. The time period is in the early 1930s during the years of the Great Depression when poverty and unemployment were widespread in the United States. The narrator of the story is Scout, a young girl who is reminiscing on her past from the age of six to the age of ten by the end of the novel. In "To Kill A Mockingbird," by Harper Lee, coming of age and the loss of childhood innocence is an important theme that author Harper Lee develops using two characters. .
             We begin the novel with the observations of Scout of her old run down city of Maycomb, what she describes as slow, dull, boring, and lifeless. In chapter three, Scout is ready for her first day of school with her brother Jem where she is first tested on how she deals with the outer world of people. Although she lives in the small city where everyone knows each other, it comes down to life lessons and growing up. In chapter three, after Scout is punished for coming to school with prior knowledge on how to read on the first day of school, the teacher becomes upset due to the fact that she shouldn't be taught by her dad, because he could instill bad habits in her. Scout tells her dad of this mishap at school. Atticus, Scout's father, then says, "You never really understand a person until you consider things from their point of view. Until you climb into their skin and walk around in it" (Lee 30). Scout comes to realize by her fathers words that not everyone thinks alike and that sometimes you have to put yourself in others' shoes to cope with the surrounding world. This happened to be Scout's first real moment in which she needed to come to age to fit into the regular world.

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