Coming of age through life experience is one of the crucial themes of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird. This is clearly demonstrated through Jem’s loss of innocence throughout the novel. Jem Finch begins as a naive young boy and ultimately grows to the mature young man known at the end of the story. At the beginning of the novel, Jem’s only concern is to unlock mysteries about Boo Radley. Throughout the novel, Jem’s fixation with Boo Radley s becomes trivial in comparison to the more elaborate case his father, Atticus, takes on. Tom Robinson, a poor black man in Maycomb, becomes convicted by Bob Ewell of raping his daughter, Mayella. The occurrence of the Tom Robinson trial exhibits on Jem’s disappointment over the conclusion the jury decides. …show more content…
Finch will be defending at What the children couldn't see is that this case was going to literally be black and white. The kids saw it as fair as reality, but everyone else already knew who would win. The children sit up in the colored balcony with Reverend Sykes to watch the case of Tom Robinson unfold. Jem concludes in his mind that they must of winning the case because of the lack of evidence that Tom was guilty announcing to the Reverend, “Don't fret, we’ve won it.” (Lee 279) Jem can't understand yet the racial bias the jury will have over Bob Ewell which will be due to the case being a white man over a Negro. Children can't see social labels and assumptions because they are still so innocent and young. When Jem presents his opinion to Reverend Sykes the racial bias that will occur in the case is finally put to light. He responds to Jem, "I ain't ever seen any jury decide in favor of a colored man over a white man....” What's so impactful about this statement is that what the Reverend said truly is the unfortunate reality of this whole trial. The jury then comes out and Scout quickly realizes that their father and his defendant could not have won the case because no member of the jury would even glance at the face of Tom Robinson. Scout explains that each "guilty" was as if there was a stab between Jem's shoulders. The exact opposite of what Jem thought would happen occurred. Jem never considered the bias the jury …show more content…
There proved to be a lack of evidence shown that Tom was even guilty and very good defense of Atticus explaining how Tom would have been unable to rape Mayella because he is right handed. Jem cries after the case announcing, “It ain't right.” After the trial, Jem realizes the court system’s method of proving a defendant guilty is greatly inaccurate, given that there was overwhelming evidence that Tom was innocent. Jem soon realizes that every person is not as good as he once thought they were. He is a growing teenager in a time where life is already stressful enough. This trial being added to what he is concerned about is truly a rough situation for this young boy to be in. Atticus tells Jem that he must find the time to grow from what he has learned and mature from it. Jem shows to have learned from the trial about the racial unfairness that is still present in their community. He explains to his sister the morals behind not killing the roly bug because it would be the same as killing a mockingbird, a lesson Scout could not have understood when Atticus at the time taught Jem. Jem wants to protect all things that have done no harm to him after seeing the unfairness of the incrimination that resulted in the
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In chapter 23, Jem is talking to Scout and Atticus about what is going to happen to Tom. Atticus explains to them that Tom could possibly “go to the chair,” if he loses his appeal (219). Atticus goes on to explain how he agrees with the laws on rape, but a jury should not give the death penalty for “circumstantial evidence” (219). Later in the conversation, Jem states that he believes that they should “do away with juries” (220). This shows that he wants to understand the system and what his father does, but he can not wrap his head around the idea that a jury convicted an innocent
In Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, the people of Maycomb County have certain views as to who laid responsible for Tom Robinson’s death. Differing values among different characters heavily affect their opinions. Lee’s incorporation of traditional southern values and character dialogue provide the reader with details that help to detect Harper Lee’s view on who was responsible for Tom’s death, views supporting hers, and views contradicting hers. Lee’s judgment on who was responsible for Tom’s death was depicted through the character Atticus.
It is during the trial of Tom Robinson that he truly understands the malevolent world and its mindset. “It was Jem’s turn to cry. His face was streaked with angry tears as we made our way through the cheerful crowd. ‘It ain’t right,’ he muttered…” (212). In this quote, Jem realizes the verdict and knows how wrong it was.
Why Tom Robinson Is A Mockingbird "Mockingbirds don't do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don't eat up people's gardens, don't nest in corncribs, they don't do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That's why it's a sin to kill a mockingbird." (Lee 90).
A fair trial wasn’t possible. Scout and Jem are forced to realize in this discussion that the justice system doesn’t apply the same rules for whites
During the pivotal trial of Tom vs. Mayella Ewell, Tom was convicted of raping Mayella. Mayella claims that Tom forced her, but later the reader finds out that Tom was offering Mayella help and the real attack was Mayella’s abusive father, Bob Ewell. Atticus tries to lend a hand to Tom by defending him with confidence, regardless of what the community has to say to the well-known lawyer. The verdict of the trial is that Tom is guilty and he comes to the sense that in Maycomb, the words of a cruel White man is more trustworthy than the words of a honest Black man. Even Atticus could not demolish the hatred of Blacks in the jury, “Atticus had used every tool available to free men to save Tom Robinson, but in the secret courts of men’s hearts Atticus had no case” (Lee 323).
In the thought-provoking novel To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee uses epiphany, point of view, and symbol to convey that we become more desensitized the older we get. On page 285 Tom Robinson has just been convicted by his jury and the Finches have made their way home from the trial. Jem is deeply affected by the jury’s decision and is crying because of the injustice he has witnessed in the courtroom a few minutes before. Jem asks Atticus how the jury could convict Tom Robinson to which Atticus replies, “‘I don’t know, but they did it. They’ve done it before and they did it tonight and they’ll do it again and when they do it--seems that only children weep’” (285).
When Scout and her brother Jem, were in the courthouse during the Tom Robinson trial, they thought for sure that her father was going to win the case. Jem didn’t realize that an innocent black man could get blamed for something he didn’t do just because he was black. Out of all character’s in the book Jem really struggled the most with racism, “How could they
s children get older, they start to mature and experience new things, some of which are not always pleasant. In “To Kill a Mockingbird”, by Harper Lee, this maturing is illustrated through Jem, who starts the novel as a small, disobedient child. However, as the story progresses, several changes can be seen in Jem’s personality and overall being. Jem starts to become colder towards Jem and Dill, stops partaking in the games that they used to play, and overall just becomes more like an adult. Lee highlights how the transition from a child to an adult can be sudden and rough through Jem by his experiences from a naive, reckless boy, to a mature and accepting young man.
Ryan Talley Mrs. Malone English 9H Period 5 05 March 2023 Jem’s Journey Coming of Age “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view --until you climb into his skin and walk around in it”(Lee 39). This is what Atticus Finch tells his kids that start their coming of age and worldview in Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, which takes place in the small fictional town of Maycomb in the 1900s. Although one of the protagonists Jem is fairly young in the novel, his actions and growth significantly show how far he has matured in these years of his life.
Displaying Jem’s maturity, this statement is also a prime example of how not only adults use reason. Furthermore, Scout learns that others can use logic no matter their age. On the other hand, the jury of the court case applied only their feelings when deciding the final ruling. Later in the discussion Jem and Atticus had, Atticus explains, “There’s something in our world that makes men lose their heads– they couldn’t be fair if they tried” (251). The men of the jury’s senses of reason had been altered due to their own ignorance of the facts presented in the case and the fact that they do not have enough courage to say that a black man is innocent.
After hours of waiting, the jury came back in. Scout explains how “A jury never looks at the defendant if it has convicted, and when this jury came in, not one of them looked at Tom Robinson… Judge Taylor was polling the jury; ‘ Guilty...Guilty...Guilty’”(211) When Scout and Jem hear the verdict, they are distraught. As they were walking home, “It was Jem’s turn to cry.. ‘It’s not right, Atticus’”(212)
By the end of the book, Jem shows true bravery when trying to protect his sister, Scout, from Bob Ewell’s attack. During the trial, Jem becomes aware of the evil inflicted on Tom Robinson and it ruins his innocence. He is forced to confront the racism and injustice that surrounds him in the town of Maycomb. These events make Jem a mockingbird injured by the world around
Throughout the story of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Scout Finch and her brother, Jem, encounter the many trials of living in the small county of Maycomb, Alabama. Within their society, the ingrained principle is that those of lighter colored skin are superior to those of darker skin; Robert E. Lee Ewell is a man who strongly believes in this idea. Bob Ewell lacks compassion and love for his own daughter, leading him to beat her and force her to conceal the truth about her injuries; Additionally, Scout realizes the true corruption that lies within Mr. Ewell. He is a dishonest man who blatantly lies during the court trial, framing black man, Tom, who is likely to be seen as guilty due to the color of his skin; However, Scout is able to conclude that Tom is innocent. Although an adult, Bob Ewell never takes
In the novel To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee many characters are victims of the harsh conditions of Maycomb County. Often those who are seen to be metaphorical mockingbirds are punished the most. A mockingbird is one who only wants and attempts to do good. Characters such as Boo Radley, Jem Finch and Tom Robinson are exemplars of mockingbirds in Maycomb. In the novel it is explained by Atticus that killing a mockingbird is a sin because they do not do anything to harm to us like nesting in corncribs, or eating up the gardens, they only sing for us.