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To Kill a Mockingbird 5 chunk essay
English 10 Mr. Steele
9.25.03
The novel To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is a book about two
children, Jem and Scout, growing up in the south during the great
depression. During the course of the story, they meet many people. Jem
and Scout develop perceptions about the people they meet, some of which are
true, and some of which turn out later not to be true. Some of the people
they are wrong about include Boo Radley, Mrs. Dubose, and Atticus.

At the beginning of the story, Boo is introduced as someone that
Scout is afraid of. Jem and Dill get very curious about him because they
never see him, and so they start getting closer and closer to the house.

Atticus tells Jem to stop terrorizing Boo, but he and Dill keep on playing
the games. Jem ends up almost getting shot by Arthur Radley because He and
Dill go to the Radley house at night. As Jem is running away from the
house, he gets his pants caught on the fence. He runs away without them
because he is scared of being shot. He goes back later to get them, and
they are folded over the fence, as if someone knew he was coming back.

This is one of the first times that you can see that Boo may not be the
monster he is made out to be. Another time is when they find the trinkets
in the tree. At first they don’t know it is Boo but they finally realize
that he is the only person that could be doing it. The final event that
makes Scout understand Boo is when he saves her life, and then after she
walks him home and while she is standing on his porch, she sees her and
Jem’s life through Boo’s eyes. She realizes that he feels very close to
them because they are the only people he sees most of the time, and that he
is not a monster at all.

Mrs. Dubose is another person that is not what she seems to be at
first. Jem and Scout think that Mrs. Dubose is just a mean old lady that
sits on her porch all the time. When they pass her house every day, she
yells insults at them. Because of this, Jem and Scout think of her as a
mean old lady who likes to insult them. One day, Mrs. Dubose calls Atticus
a “nigger-lover” and Jem gets really mad about it, and cuts down Mrs.

Dubose’s flowers. As a punishment, he has to read to Mrs. Dubose every day
for a month. Scout and Jem find it disgusting to have to be near her. A
few days after Jem finishes his punishment, Mrs. Dubose dies. Atticus and
Scout are not particularly sorry for her, but Atticus tells them the real
story of Mrs. Dubose. He tells then that she is addicted to morphine, but
instead of giving in and taking it, she refuses to take it and it makes her
very sick. That is the reason that she is so mean. Atticus also tells
them that even if Jem had not destroyed the flowers, he would have made
them read to her, because even though he disagrees with Mrs. Dubose’s
opinions on some issues, he knows that her resistance to the drug is an
example of real courage.

Atticus is another person that turns out not to be like what he
seems. Scout and Jem think that he can’t do anything, and are jealous of
other people’s parents because they do things like play in a town football
game. Scout talks to Mrs. Maudie about it, and she tells him all the
things he can do. A little later in the book, Scout and Jem find out that
Atticus is the sharpest shooter in a all of Maycomb county. Scout feels
guilty about thinking that her father couldn’t do anything. Then, near the
end of the book, Scout realizes how good of a man her father is. She is
told how he is the only man in Maycomb who will “be a Christian” when it is
really needed, because he is the one standing up for what is right when no
one else will. Scout then knows how much more she loves her father than
she would the fathers of her peers.

Throughout the book, Scout and Jem judge a lot of people by what they
look like or act like when they first meet them. In the case of their
father, they make assumptions about him based on years of living with him.

A lot of the beliefs they have about these people turn out to be wrong.

The way they look at those people change, not because the people have
changed at all, but because of some event that caused Jem and Scout to see
what they are really like. In our everyday lives, this happens all the
time. People are judged because of their appearance or attitude, and they
are not really like that at all. If someone dresses in black and wears
spikes then other people look at them, think “oh he’s a goth” and never
find out any more about that person. If they only met the person, they
might like each other and become good friends. However, that can’t happen,
and it’s all because of someone being judged. If people didn’t judge each
other, everyone would be happier and would have more friends.

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