Shiny Essays

To Kill a Mockingbird Essay: Ideas and Example


Do you need help writing an essay on "To Kill a Mockingbird"? In this blog article, our writing experts will provide some ideas and example topics to help get you started. Learn how to craft the perfect thesis statement and organize your evidence effectively to make sure your essay stands out!

Overview of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Harper Lee was an American author best known for her classic novel, "To Kill a Mockingbird", which was published in 1960. The novel won the Pulitzer Prize and has become one of the most widely-read books in the world.

Harper Lee was born in Monroeville, Alabama on April 28th, 1926. As a child, she developed a love of reading, particularly books by Mark Twain. She attended Huntingdon College before transferring to law school at the University of Alabama. In 1949, she left law school without graduating to pursue her dream of becoming a writer. She moved to New York City where she worked as an airline reservation agent but eventually gave up when she found success with writing.

In 1957 Harper Lee submitted "To Kill a Mockingbird" for publication and it received positive reviews from critics upon its release three years later. The novel quickly became an international success due to its powerful themes such as racial inequality, justice versus injustice, morality, courage, and empathy. It also earned Harper Lee numerous awards including the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1961 making it one of only four novels to receive this honor during that year.

"To Kill a Mockingbird" is an award-winning novel by Harper Lee. The book was published in 1960 and has since become a classic piece of American literature. It tells the story of a young girl named Scout Finch, growing up in 1930s Alabama small town, as she learns about justice and empathy from her father Atticus Finch who decided to defend an innocent African American man. Along with the central theme of racism and injustice, the book explores coming of age and the importance of moral education. It has become a staple in the school curriculum, inspiring readers to think more deeply about issues such as prejudice and equality in today's society.

Analyzing the Main Characters and Themes

Harper Lee's novel "To Kill a Mockingbird" is a powerful portrayal of racial injustice in the Southern United States during the Great Depression era. The story revolves around a white girl named Scout Finch and her observations of the African American community in her town. Through Scout's innocent eyes, Harper Lee shows the harsh realities faced by African Americans in a deeply segregated society. The Finch family, including Scout's father Atticus Finch, serves as a moral compass, highlighting the importance of standing up for what is right, even in the face of adversity. With many well-drawn characters, the novel presents a nuanced exploration of race, class, and morality, and imparts important life lessons to readers. As Atticus Finch famously says, "You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view... Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it." This quote encapsulates one of the major themes of the novel, emphasizing empathy and understanding as essential tools in addressing prejudice and discrimination. Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird" remains a timeless classic that continues to resonate with readers, challenging them to confront societal issues and learn from its important messages.

Atticus Finch

Atticus Finch is portrayed as a just, yet understanding widowed father who teaches his children invaluable life lessons throughout the story. Atticus Finch serves as the moral center of the story, teaching Scout and Jem to be kind, understanding, and just even in the face of racial injustice and discrimination in the adult world. Atticus decides to defend Tom Robinson, an innocent black man who was falsely accused due to racial discrimination in American South society.

Scout Finch and Jem

Scout Finch (Jean Louise Finch) is the main character that embodies childhood innocence and serves as an example of what it means to have courage despite of young age, while her brother Jem represents determination and resilience.

Tom Robinson and Tob

Tom Robinson and Tob Robinson are two of the most important characters in To Kill a Mockingbird, as they provide an opportunity for Atticus Finch to demonstrate his commitment to justice. The character of Tom serves as a symbol of courage, while Tob represents the power of understanding and empathy.

Additionally, other characters like Boo Radley, Robert Mulligan, and Bob Ewell help convey messages about challenging life lessons, kindness, and acceptance despite differences. The novel deals largely with themes of racism, justice, racial prejudice, and moral education. Themes like these are explored throughout the novel and provide readers with an opportunity to reflect on how they can apply these lessons to their own lives.

How to write a good essay on Harper's Lee novel?

Our professional writers have prepared some useful tips and guidelines on how to write an effective essay that will perfectly develop your main idea and help you analyze Harper Lee's famous novel.

Outlining Your Essay

Before beginning your essay, it is important to outline what you will discuss in each paragraph. This way you can ensure that all points fit together logically and clearly support your argument. Start by brainstorming a list of key points that will serve as topics for body paragraphs. Additionally, think about specific characters or situations that may help illustrate those points further. Outlines should also include a thesis statement and a brief summary of the main argument.

Introducing Your Argument

Start your essay with an introduction that will introduce the argument you will be making throughout the paper. Give a brief overview of Harper Lee’s "To Kill a Mockingbird", highlighting key characters and plot points. Then, give a clear thesis statement that outlines your main point and the evidence you will use to support it.

Writing the Body Paragraphs

In each body paragraph, make sure to include evidence from the text to back up your claims. Examples can be direct quotes or events and situations where certain themes are clearly evident. Make sure all of your points connect logically together, building on one another as you further develop your argument.

Concluding your Essay with Reflection and Insight

Finally, draw your essay to a close with a thoughtful conclusion. Summarize the main points of your essay while also making sure to provide an overall reflection and insight on how To Kill a Mockingbird is relevant today. Connecting these themes to modern life can help readers understand just how powerful this book really is.

As demonstrated, "To Kill a Mockingbird" is a timeless classic that remains relevant in its themes of justice, prejudice, and moral education. Through Atticus Finch’s courage and determination, Scout Finch’s innocence and resilience, Tom Robinson and Tob’s struggles for acceptance, and Boo Radley's kindness despite differences; Harper Lee has created an unforgettable story that continues to inspire readers even more than half a century later.

How professional essay writers can help you with your essay?

Professional essay writers from have expertise in understanding the critical elements of a "To Kill a Mockingbird" essay. They can provide you with guidance on how to structure your essay, ensure that it is well-organized and make sure that it meets all criteria required by your instructor. In addition, they will make sure to include relevant ideas and facts from the novel, so as to illustrate your points effectively.

Finally, professional essay writers can help you revise and proofread your work before submitting it for grading. This ensures that any errors or typos are corrected before turning in your final copy. Furthermore, they may suggest changes or additions if needed so that you have a polished and high-quality piece of writing when finished. Ultimately, having an experienced essay writer review your work can help you write an effective essay on "To Kill a Mockingbird".

By following their advice and utilizing the knowledge of an expert, you will be able to craft a successful essay that meets all criteria set by your instructor. Furthermore, having someone who is familiar with the novel can provide you with invaluable feedback and insight into how to best present the themes explored in "To Kill a Mockingbird". This can help take your writing to the next level and ensure that your essay stands out from the others submitted for grading.

Major themes to write about in your to kill a Mockingbird essay

- Exploring the Power of Education in Harper Lee’s "To Kill a Mockingbird"

- Analyzing Atticus Finch’s Moral Courage In "To Kill a Mockingbird"

- A Study of Prejudice and Discrimination in "To Kill a Mockingbird"

- How Innocence is Lost Throughout the Novel, To Kill a Mockingbird

- Comparing and Contrasting Scout and Jem's Journey Through Adolescence in "To Kill A Mockingbird"

- Examining the Themes of Equality and Justice Alluded to in Harper Lee's "To Kill A Mockingbird"

- Analyzing The Complexity Of Human Nature In Harper Lee's "To Kill A Mockingbird"

-The Symbolism of Characters in “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee

Example of an Effective To Kill a Mockingbird Essay

A Study of Prejudice and Discrimination in "To Kill a Mockingbird"


Discrimination and prejudice have been present in society for as long as anyone can remember, and Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, explores these issues with great depth and insight. The novel is set during the 1930s Jim Crow era in the segregated United States South and tells the story of Atticus Finch, a small-town lawyer who defends an innocent Black man who has been falsely accused of rape by a white woman. Throughout the course of the novel, Atticus deals with different forms of prejudice and discrimination that arise from racism in Maycomb County. This essay will explore how Harper Lee uses her iconic novel to expose the pervasive nature of racial prejudice and discrimination in America’s Deep South during this era.

Thesis Statement

Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird portrays a powerful message about the unfairness of racial prejudice and discrimination in the 1930s American Deep South, highlighting how such attitudes can lead to injustice for members of minority groups.

Body Paragraph 1

One example Lee uses to illustrate racial prejudice comes from her characters Dolphus Raymond, Tom Robinson, and Boo Radley – all three are deemed to be "outsiders" by many of Maycomb's citizens because of their race or social class. Dolphus Raymond is a wealthy white man who is viewed unfavorably by his peers because he married an African American woman; due to this interracial marriage, he is assumed to be morally bankrupt by those around him despite never having done anything wrong. Similarly, Tom Robinson is an African American man who is wrongfully accused based solely on his race; his innocence does not matter to those who believe that all black men are inherently guilty regardless of evidence pointing otherwise. Finally, there is Boo Radley, who is assumed to be a dangerous criminal even though no one has ever seen him commit any crimes; instead, they judge him solely on hearsay and rumors without any proof whatsoever. All three characters represent how unfair racial stereotypes can be used against innocent people simply on account of their race or social class rather than any actual wrongdoing on their part. 

Body Paragraph 2

Another way Lee exposes the prevalence of racism in her novel is through Jem Finch’s journey toward maturity throughout its course. In the beginning, Jem struggles with understanding why people act differently depending on their skin color; he cannot comprehend why his father treats everyone equally regardless if they are black or white. However, as he grows older he begins to realize why this attitude is necessary in order for justice to prevail – otherwise, innocent people would continue to suffer unjustly under oppressive circumstances created by racism like what happened when Tom Robinson was convicted of a crime he did not commit despite overwhelming evidence proving his innocence. Through Jem’s character development towards understanding the implications behind racism, Lee emphasizes how deeply entrenched discriminatory attitudes were at this time period despite people trying to do good like Atticus Finch did when defending Tom Robinson in court knowing full well it would likely end poorly for him socially due to his efforts.


In conclusion, Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird effectively communicates how widespread racial prejudice and discrimination were in the 1930s American Deep South. Through her characters and plot points, Lee highlights the injustice of how minority group members were treated unfairly through stereotypes, rumors, and false accusations based solely on their race or social class. The novel sends a powerful message about the pervasive influence of racism during this time period, emphasizing how crucial it is to stand against such attitudes today if we want to create a more equitable society for all. 

You might also like: