Tuesday, February 3, 2015
Nelle Harper Lee
Nelle Harper Lee was born and raised in Monroeville, Alabama which is about 84 miles from my hometown of Mount Vernon, Alabama.
Monroeville had a Vanity Fair Outlet, and as a child, my family would go to Monroeville to buy underwear, jeans, socks etc. So, whenever I would teach To Kill A Mockingbird, I would lovingly show my students a map of Alabama, and we would pay careful attention to my hometown and the hometown of Harper Lee. I would fondly tell my students about my trips to Monroeville whose only claim to fame was Nelle Harper Lee and The Vanity Fair Outlet.
I would teach To Kill A Mockingbird with my whole heart, because I love the characters, the fictional town of Maycomb, and the storyline.
The premises of the entire novel is Atticus, one of the main characters, defending a Black man who was accused of raping a White girl. After a little research, I realized that this plot was based on The Scottsboro Case. This was a real case where nine Black youth were accused of raping two White ladies in Alabama. All of the youth, except one who was twelve years old, was convicted, and this caused a uproar in the North.
My students would do presentation on The Scottsboro Case, and each time that I would teach this novel and listen to the presentations, my love and respect for Nelle Harper Lee and To Kill A Mockingbird would intensify.
If you have not read To Kill A Mockingbird, I highly recommend that you do.
So, today there was some breaking news. One of my co-workers sent us an email early this morning with an article attached which stated that another book by Harper Lee would be released July 14. Now, I read this email, and my heart started racing. The only book that Harper Lee ever published was To Kill A Mockingbird, and I sure did want her to write another one. However, I had given up. Now, fifty years after To Kill A Mockingbird, another book by Harper Lee is going to be released that is titled Go Catch A Watchman.
Today is a GOOD day in the literary world.... Long Live Nelle Harper Lee!!!
I've started the countdown to July 14.....