Mayella Ewell

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Mayella Ewell by Mind Map: Mayella Ewell

1. Looks Like

1.1. Empovished

1.2. Disheveled

2. Acts Like

2.1. Untrustworthy

2.2. Accusing

2.3. Emotionally unstable

2.3.1. Mayella cries as she testifies and seems unable to maintain a conversation.

2.4. Child like

2.4.1. Atticus compares Mayella's behaviour to that of a child. By doing this Atticus is bringing juxtaposing ideas of womanhood: naive and weak as well as feeling guilty for her relationship with Tom, hence committing the act of perjury. "She did something every child has done—she tried to put the evidence of her offense away from her. But in this case she was no child hiding stolen contraband: she struck out at her victim—of necessity she must put him away from her—he must be removed from her presence, from this world. She must destroy the evidence of her offense." - Atticus

3. Motivated By

3.1. Self Preservation

3.2. Keeping her own dignity

3.2.1. She falsely testifies against Tom for many reasons, one of which is to maintain her own dignity. If it was revealed that she made a 'move' on a black man, she would be shamed throughout the county.

3.3. Desire to be better than the Maycomb disgrace

3.3.1. Against the fence, in a line, were six chipped-enamel slop jars holding brilliant red geraniums, cared for as tenderly as if they belonged to Miss Maudie Atkinson, had Miss Maudie deigned to permit a geranium on her premises. People said they were Mayella Ewell’s.

4. Textual Issues or Concerns Linked to this Character

4.1. Social Hierarchy

4.2. Poverty

4.3. Domestic Abuse

4.3.1. Throughout the court case, it becomes more and more evident that Bob is the one that has beaten Mayella

4.4. Loneliness

4.4.1. "When Atticus asked had she any friends, she seemed not to know what he meant, then she thought he was making fun of her." This quote shows the reader immediately that Mayella has a non-existent social life and the idea of friends is distant to her.

5. How Others See Her

5.1. Beneath Them

5.1.1. "He's one of the Ewells, ma'am" This quote, spoken by Scout, demonstrates how even children know of the Ewells and their poverty.

5.2. A liar

5.3. Sympathetically

6. Beliefs and Values

6.1. The white Southern women are superior to the black men (Tom Robinson)

6.1.1. Mayella accuses Tom Robinson of rape because she could access the privileges of the white, being that the court will justify Tom as guilty because of his skin colour.