How Is Jem Mature In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Many philosophers say; “The most challenging part of growing up is letting go of what is comfortable, and moving on to something unknown.” This quote strongly applies to the maturity process of Jeremy “Jem” Finch, a lead character in Harper Lee’s award-winning novel, To Kill a Mockingbird. Jem struggles to understand his role in society as the picturesque facade of his sleepy southern town is destroyed, revealing the darkness underneath the surface. In this coming-of-age story amidst of a race war, Jem navigates the hardships of maturity. He is aided by the guidance of his father, who plays an integral role in the conflict of the small town as the court-appointed lawyer of an African-American man falsely accused of assaulting a white…show more content…
Dubose. Scout, Jem’s younger sister, calls Mrs. Dubose“plain hell.” (Lee 7). Mrs. Dubose is not a likable woman, a point made further clear when Scout describes her as “Horrible. Her face was the color of a dirty pillowcase, and the corners of her mouth glistened with wet,” (Lee 142). After the sharp-tongued crone insults Jem’s father, Atticus, Jem flies into a rage, rampaging across Mrs. Dubose’s garden and refusing to stop until “he had cut the tops off every camellia bush Mrs. Dubose owned” (Lee 137). As a form of punishment, Atticus forces the siblings to read to the ornery woman. During each session, the woman flies into a fit, and the children are allowed to leave once an alarm clock sounds for her medicine. As days pass, they stay for longer periods of time, and the woman’s fits decrease. It is only after Mrs. Dubose’s death that the truth is revealed to the young children; Mrs. Dubose was a morphine addict, and they were merely distractions as she fought, eventually beating, her addition. Atticus explains that “Real courage is when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway, and you see through no matter what. (Lee 149) Armed with this new definition of authentic courage, Jem grows closer to
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