Last Updated 09 Apr 2020

To Kill a Mockingbird Growing Up

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The novel To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee is about a young girl named Scout and her brother, Jem, growing up in the small, southern town of Maycomb, Alabama. Scout and Jem live with their older father, Atticus, and spend their summers playing with their friend, Dill. They have many neighbors, and one is an older woman named Mrs. Dubose. As the siblings grow older, they begin to drift apart and new disagreements begin. Yet, as Jem begins change, he starts to think more maturely about feuds with his sister and opinions towards his neighbors. For example, in the tire incident, Jem realizes that Scout is in trouble and tries to help her. In addition, in the flower incident with Mrs. Dubose, Jemfs anger causes him to try to defend Atticus. Jem thinks that he is acting very maturely during the tire incident and the flower incident with Mrs. Dubose.

Jem thought he was being responsible during the tire incident because he took care of Scout. When Jem, Scout, and Dill are playing in the yard one day, Scout decides she wants to be pushed in the tire. As Scout and Dill are arguing over who will go first, Jem arbitrates, and awards Scout with the first push. Jem then accidentally rolls the tire into the Radley yard. Jem is frightened and says, gScout, get away from there, come on!h (37). This quote shows that Jem is taking on some responsibility for Scout. When he pushes her into the Radleyfs Yard, Jem feels angry about what Scout had said earlier, so he wants to get revenge. Yet, when Jem sees Scout lying on the ground he immediately feels worried and scared for her, and tries to get her to come to safety. As Jem grows up, he begins to develop new views on situations. Scoutfs situation during the tire incident reminds Jem that he needs to take on full responsibility of his sister.

Jem thought that the most mature way to express his feelings about Mrs. Dubose was to cut off all of her flowers. When Jem and Scout are returning home one day they walk pass Mrs. Dubosefs house. As they walk by her yard, Jem runs into her garden and cuts off all of her flowers because of what Mrs. Dubose said earlier about Atticus. Scout tells us that, gHe did not begin to calm down until he had cut the tops off every camellia bush Mrs. Dubose owned, until the ground was littered with green buds and leaves. He bent my baton against his kneech (103). This quote shows that Jem was feeling very hurt by what Mrs. Dubose had said about his father. To Jem, Atticus seems feeble and old, so, when threatened, Jem feels it is his responsibility to protect him. In the book, when Mrs. Dubose talks about Atticus, Jem just ignores her and walks away, but finally he decides to get revenge. He does this by, glittering the ground with green buds and leaves.h Jem tries to hurt something Mrs. Dubose loves like she attacked Atticus. Mrs. Dubosefs harsh words make Jem feel that it is his job to defend Atticus.

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As To Kill a Mockingbird progresses, Jem takes definitive steps toward maturity with his actions in the tire and flower incidents, for example. He would later go on to repair the flowerbed he destroyed, and take greater care to protect Scout. Through his actions, we can see Jem develop a sense of morals and responsibility that would prove to be a lifesaver.

scout and Jem Finch are growing up in the tired old Alabama town of Maycomb. Their father, Atticus, is the local lawyer and as a single parent tries to raise his children with honor and respect to their individualism. With the Depression on times are hard, and there is no money to be found anywhere in town.

To amuse themselves Scout, Jem, and their best friend Dill begin a relentless campaign during their summertimes to get Boo Radley, their reclusive, legendary neighbor, to come out of his house. They concoct endless schemes and even go so far as to create a play that details Boo's life. Atticus forbids them to have anything to do with Mr. Radley, urging them to let the poor man be.

Atticus is a good man, and one day takes on a case that affects him personally. A black man, Tom Robinson, is accused of beating and raping a white woman, Mayella Ewell. Most of the county is convinced immediately that Tom is guilty of the crime, and begin to look at Atticus in a very negative way for actually defending him and trying to do right by him. Scout and Jem begin to get tormented over their father at school, and Atticus begs them not to get riled up over the town's prejudice.

As the trial begins it becomes apparent to Scout and Jem that there is no way that Tom Robinson could have beaten and raped Mayelle Ewell, as he'??s a cripple. Atticus proves that to the jury, and Scout and Jem are astonished when Tom is slapped with a guilty verdict anyway. They begin to realize that many people in town are very prejudiced against blacks, and their hearts are saddened by it. It'?s hard for them to understand how people can be so mean to each other, and they both begin to see that, even in court where things are supposed to be unbiased, men's hearts bring in their own hatreds.

It isn't much longer that Tom is shot and killed for trying to escape while in prison. Jem especially takes the whole affair hard, and it takes him a long time to come to grips with the jury's decision, and Tom's death.

After the trial has died down Bob Ewell, Mayelle's father, begins threatening Atticus for embarrassing him in court, and resolves that he'll get him back one way or another. Atticus is convinced that he's all talk, and passes it off as such.

Time crawls past, and finally Bob Ewell is good to his word and attacks the children Halloween night with a knife. He breaks Jem's arm and almost kills Scout, but Boo Radley, of all people, comes to their rescue and saves them. The sheriff, Heck Tate, hushes the whole thing over so Boo Radley will not be dragged into the spotlight, and Scout is thrilled to finally get to meet the man they for so long fantasized about. As she walks him back home, she realizes that all this time he was watching them from his front porch windows, and just for a little while she is able to stand in his shoes.

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