Essay On Calpurnia In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Everyone wants the perfect parental environment when growing up. Unfortunately, this doesn’t hold true for many. In the story To Kill a Mockingbird, the children are lacking a mother and their father is so busy with his job, he doesn’t always get to spend quality time with them. An African-American woman, Calpurnia, however, tries to serve a much needed role in this story. “Yo’ folks might be better’n the Cunninghams but it don’t count for nothin’ the way you’re disgracin’ ‘em if you can 't act fit to eat at the table you can just sit here and eat in the kitchen!” This is one of many examples Calpurnia sets for Jem and Scout. Calpurnia is not the mother of Jem and Scout. She is the Finch’s cook, but she plays a more serious role in the children’s life. People expect African Americans to be uneducated and poor, but Calpurnia is the exact opposite of those standards. She is wise, caring, and conflicted.…show more content…
For instance, when she took the children to her church, she acted very different around her friends and family, than she does when she’s at the Finch’s household. Seeing the way Calpurnia acts, Scout begins to wonder why Calpurnia acts different when she is with her friends and family. Scout now realizes that Calpurnia has life outside of the Finch house. “That Calpurnia led a modest double life never dawned on me. The idea that she had a separate existence outside our household was a novel one, to say nothing of her having command of two languages” (Lee 138). Scout is now curious about Calpurnia’s “second life” and begins to prod her with simple questions such as when is her birthday and where did she grow up. Calpurnia answers with no hesitation but we don’t know how she feels answering the questions. Scout learns a plethora of facts from Calpurnia’s past and knows now that Calpurnia isn’t just a person who gives her a hard time, she is just a regular
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