Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Understanding To Kill a Mockingbird- Mr. Radley

  1. #1

    Understanding To Kill a Mockingbird- Mr. Radley

    Hello, everyone!

    New here and decided to register because I had a pressing question to answer. Here goes:
    In Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird we briefly read some characterization about Mr. Radley (Boo's Father) ”Mr. Radley said no Radley was going to any asylum, when it was suggested that [it] might be helpful to Boo”

    Okay, so... Does Mr. Radley not want him to go to an asylum because he is proud, possessive, abusive, and/or doesn't want Boo to be helped. Or, does he not want to send Boo to an asylum because 1900 asylums were cruel, unclean, and unhealthy for the mentally ill?

    Cal mentions, at his death, that Mr. Radley was a cruel man but I am having trouble understanding if keeping Boo at the house was of ill or pure intent.

    Please send in your thoughts!
    Thanks
    Daniella

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    A rural part of Sweden, southern Norrland
    Posts
    3,124
    I have not read TKaM, but perhaps you can search for it in the forum and see if someone else has done so?

  3. #3
    University student EvoWarrior5's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    126
    It's been a long time since I have read it, but just from the tone of "no Radley was going to any asylum" I would think that it is a sense of family pride. Having his son be sent to an asylum would be a blemish to the Radley name. Sure, a lot of people already know about Boo's situation, but keeping him in the house still gives the sense that things are under control; sending him to an asylum gives off the vibe that it was so bad that they had to pass him on to specialists as they could not handle it themselves.
    Without any form of punctuation, our language would not say "I'm perfect"; it would say "imperfect".

    "Access to works of art cannot be defined solely in terms of physical accessibility, since works of art exist only for those who have the means of understanding them."

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    A rural part of Sweden, southern Norrland
    Posts
    3,124
    To Kill a Mockingbird was published in 1960, was immediately successful and won the Pulitzer Prize. The Wikipedia article on it is linked above. Harper Lee was the author.

    I have not read it myself but intend to do so as soon as possible.

  5. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    2,918
    To have a family member incarcerated in an asylum has long been seen as a source of embarrassment - even in our slightly more enlightened times this is still a common feeling. Mr Radley is a good example of a "well-intentioned" bad parent. Pride is a significant part of his thinking, as is shame. The darkly ironic part here is that if Boo had not been unbalanced in his youth, his treatment by his father would certainly have been enough to damage him. Mr Radley is a religious obsessive. His attitude to belief and how to live is in contrast with Atticus's - one of several contrasts with Atticus that the novel implies.

  6. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    2,918
    Thirty million plus copies sold. That's good going for a decent book. It's also an instructive tale of co-operation between a good editor and author. Hofhoff guided the young author through the process from the poor Go Set a Watchman (cynically?published as a separate novel by the legal-eagle) to this finished product which bears more than one reading as any half-good text should.

  7. #7
    Ecurb Ecurb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Eugene, OR
    Posts
    2,297
    I'll bet asylums in the American South in the 1930s weren't the best places to live. Whether the Radleys decided to keep Boo at home because of shame or reputation or kindness, I imagine it was the best decision for Boo's welfare (and for Scout and Jem's). (I know nothing about this, by the way/ I'm just guessing.)

  8. #8
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Beyond nowhere
    Posts
    5,897
    To Kill a Mockingbird is set in a very conservative town, so one is allowed to suppose that one at least of the reasons for keeping Boo hidden at home,was what the community might think about him.
    Ironically Boo turns out to be one of the several characters that challenge the prejudices of the place.

    I enjoyed the book very much. Together with Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer its a classic about growing up in the North American South.
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

Similar Threads

  1. To kill a mockingbird - help with understanding!
    By wannabe in forum General Literature
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 12-08-2012, 10:16 AM
  2. To Kill a Mockingbird
    By Motherof8 in forum General Literature
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 12-06-2012, 03:19 AM
  3. To kill a mockingbird
    By osho in forum General Literature
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-13-2012, 05:48 PM
  4. To Kill A Mockingbird
    By accadacca in forum General Literature
    Replies: 31
    Last Post: 08-17-2008, 04:08 PM
  5. Who Could Kill A Mockingbird?
    By ampoule in forum Personal Poetry
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 05-01-2008, 08:44 AM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •