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Importance of this Trial in To Kill a Mockingbird The trial of Tom Robinson is fundamental to our Comprehension of social and racial prejudice in Maycomb. Harper Lee uses Tom Robinson's 'crime' to bring tensions in the town to a mind and the writer uses the trial for a way of making the ideas behind these anxieties explicit for the reader. The two people involved with the so-called offense, Tom Robinson and Mayella Ewell, are at the very base of Maycomb society. Tom is black and Mayella one of the poorest of the poor whites. However, neither of them fits in the stereotypes held by the people of Maycomb. Tom is fair, hardworking and reliable, as Mr Link Deas's shouted testimony and his demeanour in court demonstrate. Mayella is a part of the poorest and most shiftless families in town however she looks after her brothers and sisters, keeps herself clean and proceeds to her geraniums at the toughest of circumstances. It's clear that before the alleged rape a kind of friendship had grown up between Tom and Mayella. Tom Robinson was probably the only person who had been decent to (Mayella). Unfortunately the ideas about race and society held in the time supposed that contact between them could not be anything other than distant and respectful (quite apart from the fact that Tom was wed anyway). However, Mayella's yearning for some form of close human contact emerges throughout the trial. She'd saved for nearly a year to get enough nickels to give her brothers and sisters a treat so as to have her home empty when she invited Tom inside. When she left her progress into Tom he had been captured by his inability to hit a white girl and the intense taboo that Maycomb put on any kind of...