Gender Equality in to Kill a Mockingbird

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Updated: Mar 28, 2022
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For centuries, there was always the mindset that men are superior to women. They were known to know more, do more and be the primary figure in all circumstances. Gender equality was not a widely known and controversial topic until the early 2000’s. Even with movements popping up, gender inequality still persisted. Females were expected to do ‘lady like things’; these things include: staying at home to clean, wear dresses and stay out of trouble. In the book To Kill A Mockingbird, Scout, the narrator and main character, does the exact opposite thing.

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One of the many themes of the book is that women can do whatever men do and vice versa.

Women don’t always get treated the same way men do. Examples in the book are how Scout gets into a fight on the first day of school. Then she gets in trouble at home because girls aren’t supposed to be getting in trouble. Another example is from an article from Era Dabla-Norris and Kalpana Kochhar , she talks about how women can work the same job as men, but won’t make as much as men do (Closing the Gender Gap: The Economic Benefits of Bringing More Women into the Labour Force).

Scout didn’t care for what other people thought of her. In the book To Kill A Mockingbird, Scout the main character did pretty much the exact opposite thing . She got in trouble her first day of school, she wore a dress about once and she played outside with her boys most of the time at home. These things happened in the book and also even now today in real life it is, they reasons may seem like nothing but there are things that is stopping girls or women from being themselves.

Women can’t be themselves because of the way men judge them today. From the book To Kill A Mockingbird, Scout retells us what Jem said “Scout I’m tellin’ you for the last time, shut your trap or go home- I declare tot he Lord you’re gettin’ more like a girl every day!”(pg.28). Jem talks to Scout in a way that isn’t okay and that is saying how Scout shouldn’t act like a girl because they are not like how tough and strong men should be. These are one of the reason girls cant be themselves because of the way all men judge them, they judge them like they are doing something wrong.

Another quote is “Don’t pay any attention to her, just hold your head high and be a gentlemen.”(pg 25)( This quote refers more on how men are better, higher than women are. How men thinks that women aren’t and can’t be as good at anything like men can. This statement is false because all people have the same and equal right to do whatever it is. Our culture has been so use to how men are better than women, how they can just say they are better without and proof. Just saying it to say it even if they even aren’t better.

Women shouldn’t be treated the way there are then and now. They should be treated with more respect, they should be treated just like men are treated. Women should have equal opportunity as men and should be put up instead of down. I believe Lee is saying that women can do whatever it is they want the main example is Scout, she does so many things that show it like the fight or hanging out with boys.

Work Cited

  1. Norris, Era Dabla. “Closing the Gender Gap: The Economic Benefits of Bringing More Women into the Labour Force.” Sirs, SIRS® Issues Researcher, 19 Mar. 2019,
  2. Lee, Harper. “To Kill A Mocking Bird.” To Kill A Mocking Bird, Kami,
    Date Accessed: May 1, 2019
  3. “Women’s Roles in the 1950s, 1950-1959.” DISCovering U.S. History, Gale, 2003. Student Resources In Context, Accessed 19 Apr. 2019.
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Gender Equality in To Kill A Mockingbird. (2021, Jun 30). Retrieved from