In “To Kill a Mockingbird” what is the nightmare that has descended upon the children?

Updated 21 March, 2023
In "To Kill a Mockingbird," the nightmare that has descended upon the children is the racism and injustice in their town of Maycomb. Scout and Jem witness firsthand the prejudice and discrimination against Tom Robinson, a black man falsely accused of a crime. The children struggle to understand why the people around them are so quick to judge Tom based on the color of his skin rather than the facts of the case. This awakening to the harsh realities of the world around them causes the children to mature and lose their innocence.
Detailed answer:

In "To Kill a Mockingbird," the nightmare that has descended upon the children is the realization of the deep-rooted racism and prejudice in their society. As they grow older and become more aware of the world around them, Scout and Jem begin to understand the harsh reality of racial inequality in their small town of Maycomb.

As Jem tells Scout, "There's just something about white folks that turns them into devils when they're driving—just got to be a white man every time" (Chapter 16). This statement highlights the deeply ingrained racism in their society, which is further emphasized by the trial of Tom Robinson.

The trial is a turning point for the children, as they witness the harsh reality of injustice and racism in their community. As Atticus defends Tom Robinson, they come to realize the deeply rooted prejudices that exist among their neighbors, friends, and even family members. Despite Atticus's best efforts, the trial ends in a guilty verdict for Tom, revealing the systemic racism that permeates their society.

In addition to the trial, the children's nightmare is also fueled by the violence and hatred of Bob Ewell towards their family, and the realization that not everyone in their town is kind and moral. The children come to understand that the world is not always a fair or just place, and that fighting for justice and equality is often an uphill battle.

Overall, the nightmare that has descended upon the children in "To Kill a Mockingbird" is the harsh reality of racism and injustice in their society, and the realization that not everyone is capable of living up to the moral standards they were taught as children.

Do you have any other questions?
Question has been sent. We'll take a look at it in 1 day Ask another question

Where do you want us to send this sample?

    By clicking “Continue”, you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy.


    Be careful. This essay is not unique

    This essay was donated by a student and is likely to have been used and submitted before

    Download this Sample

    Free samples may contain mistakes and not unique parts


    Sorry, we could not paraphrase this essay. Our professional writers can rewrite it and get you a unique paper.



    Please check your inbox.

    We can write you a custom essay that will follow your exact instructions and meet the deadlines. Let's fix your grades together!

    We can help you get a better grade and deliver your task on time!
    • Instructions Followed To The Letter
    • Deadlines Met At Every Stage
    • Unique And Plagiarism Free
    Order your paper now