Valeria Lackey Mrs. Flemming English 10 March 3, 2011 To Kill a Mockingbird Essay In the book To Kill a Mockingbird Jem and scout live in a small town called Macomb. Scout and Jem have a lot of fun times roaming their neighborhood; even though most of the town found it unruly and disturbing that their father was okay with this behavior. Jem and scout heard criticism from a lot of people but the person who made it sting the most lived two houses down from them, Mrs. Dubose. Mrs. Dubose is an old, rude hag addicted to morphine and in this book is a symbol for the reality of things.
This mean old witch is racist, very rude and knows how to make her words sting. Mrs. Dubose’s full name is Henry Lafayette Dubose, a boy’s name, which is more than ironic when she makes fun of Scout for being a tomboy and saying things like, “Don’t say hey to me you ugly girl! You say good afternoon, Mrs. Dubose! ” Harper Lee is showing Mrs. Dubose is a hypocrite because one she has a boy’s name and two she is not attractive either so she has no right to call anyone ugly. A lot of people in this community do not agree with Atticus, but one of the few that let it be known is Mrs.
Dubose. Every day the kids pass by her house and everyday she has a new comment about their father like, “not only a Finch waiting tables but one in the court house lawing for niggers! ” Mrs. Dubose doesn’t have to address the children so harshly but she chooses to do so, Harper Lee is trying so symbolize stereotypical people. Mrs. Dubose might be able to stand up to her morphine addiction; she wouldn’t tell anyone to their face what she thinks about them only if they are smaller and they cannot do anything about it.
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Mrs. Dubose is a bully. Mrs. Dubose has been sucked into what most people should fear, an addition, but this was to a powerful highly addictive medicine, morphine. In the book it states that,” Mrs. Dubose lived alone except for a Negro girl in constant attendance’’, yet her name suggests that she is married which can only mean she has been widowed. That is when she began to spiral downward into the hands of the monster. Jem and Scout didn’t know that she was addicted to morphine they just thought she was sick.
Even when they go over to the house to read to her, Jem’s punishment Scout just tags along. Jem and Scout saw it as a nightmare to go over to this horrible woman’s house and read to her and do little chores for her. They didn’t even know they were easing her mind off of the thing that stalks it. “Mrs. Dubose was a morphine addict,” withdrawals is what Mrs. Dubose suffered every day until the morphine was completely out of her system, shortly after that she died, but she ended with a great battle to the finish.
Harper Lee was symbolizing how everyday people are sucked into the devils hand it’s their choice to decide whether or not they will get out. Through everything Mrs. Dubose thought the children and Atticus she still unfortunately died. Like everything in life no matter the accomplishments people still die, the importance is the memory story and knowledge they leave behind. “. . . Instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what.. Mrs. Dubose did not get to tell Jem this but she helped Atticus make his children realize that there is more to courage than a gun. Mrs. Dubose fought a fight with out a gun and it was a hard one but she made it and accomplished what she thought she could only dream of doing. Being free of morphine was her last wish and she accomplished that, “She said she was going to leave this world beholden to nothing and nobody. ” Her death symbolizes you do not know what you have until you lose it Jem would have never looked through her wickedness.
It took death for him to realize what she was truly about. More than just the characters in the book can learn from Mrs. Dubose, she helps unfold many lessons. Do not judge a book by its cover, take a step in another shoes for a while and a friendship can come in an unlikely place. Harper Lee used Mrs. Dubose as a symbol to reality that the real world is not a fairy tell and a lot of people are going to say hurtful things; but being the bigger person is better off in the long run. Mrs. Dubose was an old hag that overcame her fear and died without morphine.
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