Five takeaways from ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’

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This post is not a book review – for one, I am not a book reviewer and two, this all time American classic needs none. Every avid fiction reader must have To Kill a Mockingbird in their list of favorite readings. I loved it so much that I watched it’s feature film (available on NetFlix) but the movie is no where compared to the book.

Published in 1960, this novel by Harper Lee deals with serious issues of 1930’s like racial injustice and rape that are very much predominant in today’s society, not only in America but across the world, making it a great read as this remains a true picture of today’s society as it was back then.

#1: This book portrays the power game in the society played by the powerful people who bent the rules to their will and victimize the poor and middle class and simple and even the most truthful and honorable people of this society. This is the harsh reality of our society and it prevails from the time  unknown.

But despite such tough issues it has warmth and humor and family and friendship as the main protagonist in book is a small girl, Scout.

#2: As a budding writer I learned it is not always necessary to address serious issues in a serious tone, they could be dealt and may impact more in a lighter and implicit tone.

This is the only one of two published books by Harper Lee. It was immediately successful, winning the Pulitzer Prize, and has become a classic of modern American literature, that led her to many awards including the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

#3: This exemplifies that we don’t need multiple projects in our lives to be successful. Sometimes only one project or two are enough. But we should also not overlook the hard work she must have done (diligently learning and improving her craft) to prepare herself to deliver this one project of her lifetime.

Scout’s Father, Atticus, replies to each and every question to his kids – simple or tough. He never dismissed any question – what is rape? Why people call you nigger-lover? He gives them freedom to think, to experience, to understand both beautiful and ugly part of this world, but also equally prepares them well to make the correct decision and take the right action.

#4: As a father I learned that one of the biggest contributing factor for a child’s intelligence is its inquisitiveness and curiosity. And parents could play a key role in keeping this inquisitiveness alive by encouraging their children to challenge the status quo and ask tough questions, and by answering them appropriately in the best way possible.

Attitus, himself a very humble and honorable man, also teaches his children not to judge anyone but try to get into other person’s skin to understand them better.

#5: Though it is easier said than done, but still a good reminder that we should always try to understand others’ point of view, what’s actual happening in their lives, what are they going through at that point in time, their circumstances, before reacting or judging them for their words or actions. Might make life bit less stressful.

Every great book is suppose to teach us in a way. These are my five takeaways from To Kill a Mockingbird.

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