“To kill a Mockingbird” is a classic American novel written by the author Harper Lee. In 1960, the company J.B. Lippincott & Co. published the book. Since then it became popular and now, It is widely used as a textbook in some middle schools and high schools in America. In 1961, the book won the Pulitzer Prize and a year later the director Robert Mulligan made it into a film which again won the Academy Award. In 2007, it won the Quill Award for the best audiobook of the year. On the morning of February 2016, the author Harper Lee died in her sleep. She had also suffered from various health issues since 2007.
Like a quote from Terry Pratchett said –
“A man is not dead while his name is still spoken”Terry Pratchett
The author Harper Lee may die in the real world, but she is still alive as long as her legacy exists. And now I am going to reveal the valuable life lesson from one of her best legacies; “To Kill a Mockingbird”.
Lesson 01 – Don’t change your colour & believe in yourself
In life, most people are afraid of loss and being like a fish out of water. This feeling makes people away from their own conscience or Self-confidence. In this novel, there is a character called Atticus Finch. He is a defense lawyer of the town; Maycomb, Alabama. He didn’t make lots of money, but he’s an honest man who acts with his own conscience. In the story, Atticus was the defense lawyer of the man called Tom Robinson. He is the black guy in the town who had been accused of sexually assaulting a white girl. Tom said he didn’t intentionally assault the white girl. Instead, she tried to deprive him and her father saw it. So he beat her for being with a black guy.
The lawyer, Atticus, knew about the racist problem of the town and there wouldn’t be any way that the white court and jury believe his client. However, he fought as hard as he could, even though he already knew the end result. He believes in himself and does as his own conscience. He didn’t change his color for being a fish out of the water and that’s is the first lesson we should take from the story; “To kill a Mockingbird”. We shouldn’t change our beliefs because of the environment and always trust our own conscience in order to get self-confidence.
Lesson 02 – Think before act
People like to act without thinking anything ahead. That is the reason why most of the problems have been generated or bigger. In the story, the lawyer, Atticus taught his daughter, Scout Finch that putting fire to fire won’t make the fire away. In other words, you can’t solve violence with another violence. That only makes things worst. Bullying is another form of violence and it is the same concept as fire. You can’t stop bullying by replying and reacting back over and over again. This will only make things worst. So her father, Atticus taught her to be patient and restraints are the best allies in bully and this will make the bully away.
He also taught this amazing quote of the story to her daughter –
“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view.”Atticus Finch
That is another great saying to think from others’ points of view before acting. To understand this concept more, I highly suggest reading the original book. This lesson seems little like a fact in the self-help book, but the storyline and the emotion have given from “To kill a Mockingbird” can be felt only by reading its original one.
Lesson 03 – Don’t look at the surface
Most people including myself sometimes look at book covers and judge them easily. That’s not a good habit and people should evolve from that judging standard. In the story, Atticus Finch concludes with the words not to just look at the surface in other words don’t just judge a person based on their appearances. The true form of a man doesn’t lie on the surface. It’s lies within the heart. The character, Atticus told us to look closely enough to see about others. Thus we can see someone’s heart better.
This is the overall summary of the book “To Kill a Mockingbird” along with the lesson that I have learned from it. Hence this article is more influenced by my point of view and additions thinking, I suggest reading the original one to get the classic, original feeling, and ideas of the book. However, I believe these three lessons are the most valuable and keys from the book and we all should aware of them in real life. We all should improve our life better from these lessons.
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For English Learners who want to listen to the Burmese version here…
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