The novel To Kill a Mockingbird teaches many good lessons about people. In this book, Jem and Scout are able to witness everyday situations in which people are not treated the same or do not have the same way of life. The children get to see and understand the Tom Robinson trial. They also see how other people lives are different from theirs, including the lives of the Cunningham’s, the Ewell’s, Tom Robinson, and Boo Radley. The children are also able to make their own opinions about most of the situations that they see.
The book To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee tells the story of Jean Louis Finch, nicknamed Scout. She lives in a small town called Maycomb county. The book is based in the 1930s showing us an inside look of what life looked like back then. The book focuses in the stories of Arthur Radley and Tom Robinson, and how they are a major part in her childhood. The book To Kill a Mockingbird portrays Scout as more intellectually developed than most young kids, but she is way too young to fully comprehend the severity of things, and this shows us that kids unconsciously follow the ‘rules’ that society has placed unless taught otherwise.
The readers can see a great change in their relationship. At the beginning, the children cannot even go near Boo’s place without palpitation, but at the end, Scout is comfortable enough to walk Boo up to his front porch. Throughout the novel, Scout has changed her view of Boo after a chain of Boo’s actions toward her. As Scout grows older, she becomes wiser to understand her father’s lesson, “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 ” (39). Her father says this at the beginning, but till the end, thanks to the maturity combined with Boo’s actions that help Scout to understand it.
In the opening chapters of To Kill a Mockingbird one character introduced who is strikingly interesting is Calpurnia. Calpurnia is considered a mother figure for Jem and Scout; always getting onto them is they misbehave. We observe this when Scout says “she always ordering me out of the kitchen, asking why I couldn't behave as well as Jem.” Calpurnia also respects others no matter their origin or race. This is portrayed after Scout scorned Walter for pouring molasses all over his food. Calpurnia tells Scout, “There’s some folks who don’t eat like us...but you ain't called on to contradict em at the table when they don’t.” Calpurnia also plays a key role of racial differences during that time period.
Can a fictional novel be a symbolic representation of the horrors of real life society? In Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, Scout Finch is a little girl in the small town of Maycomb, Alabama who is telling her adventurous story from when she was a child. The novel takes place in the 1930’s in a town where everybody knows everybody and has deep rooted Southern values. Throughout the story, Scout, her brother Jem, and their best friend Dill grow up and deal with everything that is thrown at them. They soon have bigger problems than rude teachers or peculiar neighbors when Jem and Scout’s father, Atticus, takes a case defending a black man accused of rape.
Harper Lee portrays childhood as curious and innocent, but also the “more real” aspects of growing up; the fear, the stupidity, and the flaws.The meaning of To Kill A Mockingbird is, childhood plays an extremely large role in a person’s life, and it shapes one’s views, and goals in their future. Times that Lee represents the importance of childhood are when; Scout is curious about Boo (Arthur) Radley, when Scout and Jem sneak into the courtroom, and when Scout walks Boo Radley home. Throughout the entire book, Scout is curious about Boo Radley; how he looks, how he acts, and why he has been hiding in his home for so many years. Scout is led to believe that Boo is some sort of monster, and she would run passed his house every day. “As the year passed, released from school thirty minutes before Jem, who had to stay until three o’clock, I ran by the Radley Place as fast as I could, not stopping until I reached the safety of our front porch.” (page 33) Scout was afraid of Boo, because she grew up hearing all of the terrible rumors about him.
The first character in the book that we are introduce to is of course the protagonist Jean Louise “Scout” Finch. She is also the one narrating the entire story to us. Scout in the story as narrated by her adult self is 6 years old at the beginning of the book and 9 years old at the end of the book. Scout is describe to be a little tomboyish as she has short hair and likes to rough house with her brother, Jem and future partner Dill to act boyish and tough. She also gets annoyed when her brother say things like "... you're gettin' more like a girl every day!"
After Scout’s encounters that day; she is introduced to the harsh reality that is Maycomb County. It became oblivious her experiences matured her: “ As I made my way home I felt very old… Jem and I would get grown but there wasn’t much for us to learn” (Lee 375). Scout’s innocence is corrupted by the town’s ways. Scout begins to grasp the horror in reality. Furthermore, Scout’s innocent nature unravels as she realizes the error in her ways in regards to her treatment of others.
Paragraph 8 goes back to Miss Caroline and how Scout could read, which Miss Caroline disapproved of. Before going to school, Scout would read lots of books for days on end in her treehouse with Jem, showing her intellect is above her grade level. Paragraph 19 emphasizes on Scout’s kind heart by talking about Maycomb’s social family hierarchy. This system claims that the Finches would hate Cunninghams, but Scout was kind enough to fall out of this hierarchy and become friends with Mr. Underwood’s son, Walter Cunningham. Paragraph 35 covers a moment when Scout had a childish moment, but still was smart during the event.
Scout is a very intelligent girl from birth and shows it throughout the novel. She learns to read before she even starts school, which angers her teacher due to an advantage over the other students. Scout is as intelligent as she is because of the way Atticus raised her. For being so young, she comes to understand big concepts quickly. For example, Atticus references the killing of a mockingbird early in the novel and Scout brings is back in conversation in the second to last chapter.