Examples Of Empathy In To Kill A Mockingbird

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To Kill A Mockingbird In the novel To Kill a Mockingbird, One of the most sought after books ever written, the author, Harper Lee addresses three major topics in our everyday lives. The three are racism, empathy and innocence as a child. Harper Lee emphasizes the empathy that the characters show towards each other, including the way Scout learns to grow and care for others, Atticus teaches her to understand others, and how Jem learns to step in others shoes.

Throughout the novel Atticus teaches a lot of things to Scout with the knowledge that he has. One of the first lessons he gives is “ 'You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view […] until you climb in his skin and walk around in it' ” (Lee …show more content…

A great exmple of this is when Scout says this, “ 'Atticus was right. One time he said you never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them. Just standing on the Radley porch was enough' ” ( Lee 239 ) after she walks Boo home and finally realizes what he is going through. She see's that he is a very caring man that is the main symbol of a mockingbird. She then figures out why he is like this and see's in to his skin. She see's how people treat him and how he is seen to be a very bad person, but really is one of the most gentle and kind hearted characters in the book and movie. Another way Scout shows she learns to care for others is when she says " 'It occured to me that in their own way, Tom Robinsons manners were as good as Atticus's. Until my father explained it to me later I did not understand the subtetly of Tom's predicament' " ( Lee 195 ). During this time she learned a little bit of what tom has to go through. By doing this she was able to see how he feels being acused of something he did not do. She now has the knowledge to understand other poeple and will be able to interact with them better. In addition to that she has finally found out the main lesson that Atticus has been trying to teach her, it is called …show more content…

When Jem said “ 'I know what we are going to play. Something new, something different.' ” Dill replies, “ 'What?' ” Jem then says, “ 'Boo Radley' ” ( Lee 38 ). He really feels what Boo might be going through. Even though some of the rumors he is reenacting were told to him by the gossip girl of the town and may be fake, he still understands what his life could be like. Learning this trait of empathy helps him step in to boo's shoes when he makes up this game. Also, Jem shows empathy toward both his dad and Boo when his dad asks him why he ruined Ms. Maudie's flowers. After he talked to her about Boo, he responds with " 'she said you lawed for niggers and trash' " (Lee 103 ). During this time he grows to understand what Atticus is going through with all the people not liking what he is doing with Tom Robinson. Atticus has to deal with a lot of other people nagging him about defending a Negro. Jem finally figures out how he is feeling through this tough time. Jem also figured out how Tom feels with the majority of the population in Maycomb, Alabama being white, he really gets no respect. So with Ms. Maudie saying this about Atticus he now sees how little respect Tom gets and how the people don't care what he did, they will always think he is guilty. It goes to show how many of the characters have grown throughout the novel. Jem has really used the

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