Theme Of Heroism In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Tom’s unruly nature sends him (and those he drags along with him) through a series of increasingly dire situations that provide him with opportunities to define himself as a person throughout. As Tom travels deeper and deeper into darkness (both literally and metaphorically), he comes to gain understanding in a world where others constantly seek to fill his head with their flawed conceptions. Eventually, Tom comes to embody the traits of what twain defines as a hero. Through Tom’s adventures, readers come to understand that heroism manifests when people diverge from group human behavior and focus on what they as individuals have to offer. Through overcoming society’s conception of what it means to be human, Tom is able to achieve a greatness and heroism that is independent of what others expect of him.
Tom throughout the novel is faced with many people who seek to teach him how to conduct himself. There is his Aunt Polly, the minister, and the school master Mr. Dobbins employing a variety of methods to teach Tom how one should behave. However, these characters are not the ones who truly teach Tom by the end of this novel, and it is ironically through the very aspects of his personality that they want to temper that Tom accesses his sense of heroism. It is through his curiosity and sense of adventure that he stumbles upon the scene of Dr. Robinson’s murder, it is because of his willingness to lose favor with authority that he accepts Mr. Dobbin’s punishment in Becky’s stead,
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