Innocence Symbols in ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’

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The Essence of the Mockingbird in ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’

The mockingbird symbolism of Harper Lee’s theme of innocence is destroyed by evil. Killing a mockingbird is a sin. A mockingbird in To Kill a Mockingbird isn’t an actual bird. It represents innocence. Niceness only could do good and an easy target like Boo Radley. They are innocent and never would harm anyone, just like the mockingbird. Boo Radley is also innocent and would never harm anyone; therefore, the mockingbird also symbolizes him. Boo Radley never comes out because he does not want to face the prejudiced and corrupt world.

A mockingbird is a harmless bird that makes the world more pleasant. The mockingbird symbolizes Boo Radley, who was a peaceful person who never did any harm. To kill or harm them would be a sin. Atticus tells Scout and Jem: “I’d rather you shoot at tin cans in the backyard, but I know you’ll go after birds. Shoot all the blue jays you want if you hit ’em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”

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Boo Radley’s Songless Narrative in ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’

The mockingbird symbolizes this character because it does not have its own song. The blue jay is loud and obnoxious; the mockingbird only sings other birds’ songs. Therefore, the mockingbird is seen through the other birds. The people of Maycomb only knew Boo Radley by what others said about him. Boo Radley does not have his own “song” in a sense and therefore is characterized by other people’s viewpoints. When Atticus tells Jem and Scout that it is a sin to kill the mockingbird, this refers to the actions directed toward Boo.

It was a sin to dislike Boo based on what others say about him. He was punished by the people in Maycomb because they did not have their own voice. There are many people without their own voice in society, and it is a sin to kill those without a voice. The symbolism reveals the prejudice and narrow-mindedness of the citizens of Maycomb County, their fears, and the immoral things they do. The mockingbird has a very deep and peaceful meaning in the novel. It represents peacefulness, innocence, and kindness. Characters such as Boo Radley can be compared to the mockingbird. In conclusion, the mockingbird represents peace, innocence, and kindness.

Camellias in ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’: Blooms of Innocence and Growth

In “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Harper Lee uses white camellias as a symbol to display aspects of innocence. The white color of the camellias often goes with simplicity, hope, and innocence. The first time Lee uses the symbol of the camellias is to demonstrate the destruction of innocence when Jem destroys the camellias. Jem is enraged that Mrs. Dubose insulted his mother, “he did not begin to calm down until he had cut the tops off every camellia bush Mrs. Dubose owned.” Crushing the flowers symbolizes the many ways that those aspects can be destroyed through rash and hasty decisions.

The flowers indicate that innocence is still in Jem and Scout because they believe Tom is being treated inhumanely and can see the wrongdoing of the townspeople. They are also staying strong in their mindset even after people chastise them for their views. White is often associated with life after death or rebirth. Lee is showing that the spirit of Mrs. Dubose is still alive in these flowers, and she is showing the children to advocate for what is right. The Johnson grass and weed stand for the naive majority. Because the camellias grow ahead of them, it exposes that good is always coexisting with evil. It is just up to the townspeople to figure it out. Finally, Lee used the symbol of the camellias to uncover that innocence can be preserved when Jem threw the candy box in the fire but left the camellia untouched.

After Mrs. Dubose’s death, “Jem picked up the candy box and threw it into the fire. He picked up the camellia, and when I went to bed, I saw him fingering the petals.” The action of throwing the candy box into the fire is Jem growing up and can see the effects of death or more mature topics. Candy is normally for young children, and since it is being burned, that is displaying that Jem is over his youth. On the other hand, he keeps the camellia. Since he keeps the camellia, that implies that although he is going past his youth, Jem wants to remain innocent.

To Kill a Mockingbird’s’ Symbols: Revealing Maycomb’s Prejudice

The symbol reveals the prejudice of the citizens of Maycomb and the innocence destroyed by evil. It also reveals an attempt to get rid of these feelings in Maycomb by a hero to the community, Atticus Finch, and his children, who will follow in his footsteps. Symbolism is basically what the book is about. If this book did not have any type of symbolism, it wouldn’t be complete.


  1. Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird. J.B. Lippincott & Co., 1960.

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Innocence Symbols in 'To Kill a Mockingbird'. (2023, Aug 24). Retrieved from

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