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Intruder in a Time to Kill a Mockingbird: How the Coutrroom Drama makes the Unpopular South Popular

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Lazenbatt, William W G (2011) Intruder in a Time to Kill a Mockingbird: How the Coutrroom Drama makes the Unpopular South Popular. In: The (Un)popular South. (Eds: Arbeit, Marcel and Inge, M Thomas), Palacky University Press, Olomouc, Czech Republic, pp. 63-80. ISBN 978-80-244-2888-8 [Book section]

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Abstract

This essay argues that the southern courtroom genre is cathartic, since it transforms unpopular stereotypes of behaviour such as violence and bigotry into popular and attractive traits such as tolerance and respect for justice. It focuses on three novels and their subsequent film versions to illustrate this process: William Faulkner's "Intruder in the Dust", Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird" and John Grisham's "A Time to Kill". In each, an underlying concern with miscegenation, as evidence of the final, closest and most personal connection between members of different races, is identified and examined in the context of the southern social history of the period. As these three examples of the courtroom genre suggest, the cathartic effect of recognizing the common humanity behind the superficial differences of race is a morally edifying and heartening process, one that secures the popularity of the form and promotes the best qualities of the south.

Item Type:Book section
Faculties and Schools:Faculty of Arts
Faculty of Arts > School of English and History
Research Institutes and Groups:Arts and Humanities Research Institute
Arts and Humanities Research Institute > English
ID Code:21091
Deposited By:Dr William Lazenbatt
Deposited On:21 Feb 2012 09:10
Last Modified:21 Feb 2012 09:10

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