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Caged Bird Response Essay

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Prose exposes numerous straw man arguments with To Kill a Mockingbird. Prose critiques the novel in a confident, yet slightly harsh manner. She believes that the novel could’ve been different if there was just a bit more detail. Prose interprets To Kill a Mockingbird in a way that focuses on prejudice and racism.

The way that Prose exposes straw man arguments is by talking about how “it is freighted with tons of sociopolitical ballast” and quoting the goal of the novel “To understand problems relating to discrimination and prejudice that exist in our present day society. To understand and apply these principles to our own lives” to prove her theory of how the novel is focused only on prejudice and racism. This is considered straw man because she is over exaggerating the thought of racism and prejudice being the main focus of the novel.

What Prose hasn’t realized is that she is making the novel overly prejudice because she wants students to understand how to approach this certain topic so that they won’t feel paranoid while talking about it. Prose shouldn’t have used straw man on To Kill a Mocking Bird for that reason because if students and teachers need to approach the topic in a certain manner, then they just need to discuss the issue amongst themselves

Prose also emphasizes her misinterpretations “and who defends a black man falsely accused of the rape by a poor white woman” to accuse the characters in a negative way to prove her point. Straw man was never necessary to be mentioned by Prose for the reason being how students approach such a topic. Although, Prose didn’t just use straw man for To Kill a Mocking Bird, but also quoted Maya Angelou often in I Know Why the Caged Bird Cannot Read.

I can evaluate that Prose did use the straw man fallacy often in her argument. I feel that her over exaggerations on those particular topics don’t have to be approach the way she wants. Anyone can discuss a topic freely whether it causes discomfort or not. Although, her argument proved a good point about prejudice and racism overall, her theory is true. It may have been an overly exaggerated argument, but I can see what Prose is trying to say and what she wants from the argument.

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