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To Kill A Mockining Bird
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To Kill A Mockining Bird
1. What do you learn in this chapter about Maycomb, Atticus Finch and his family?
Maycomb is the setting of this story and is a tired old town. Maycomb is twenty miles east of Finch's Landing and was the county seat of Maycomb county.Atticus Finch is Scout and Jem’s father. “I found our father satisfactory: he played with us, read to us, and treated us with courteous detachment.” Atticus was a lawyer whose office was in the courthouse. The Finch family had a cook named Calpurnia. “She was all angles and bones; she was nearsighted; she squinted; her hand was wide as a bed slat and twice as hard. She was always ordering me out of the kitchen, asking why I couldn’t as well as Jem." When Jem was six, and Scout was two, their mother died of a heart attack. In the story Jem is now ten, and his brother was almost turning six.
2. What do you learn about Dill's character?
Dill’s name is actually Charles Baker Harris, but people just call him Dill. Dill is from Meridian, Mississippi and is staying next door to the Finches with his aunt Rachel. Dill will come to Maycomb every summer and then leave to go back home to Meridian in September. He is four-and-a-half years old and can read. He seems like a very bright energetic young boy.
3. What, briefly, has happened to Arthur “Boo” Radley?
Since the town hasn’t seen him for years people assume that he is dead. When Boo came back from being locked in the courthouse basement to his parents home he was never seen again by the public. The drapes are drawn on the house; they don’t see Mrs. Radley, Mr. Radley leaves from 11:30 in the morning and comes back at noon with stuff in a brown bag. The town says that Boo only comes out at night, and goes in people’s back yards and peers through windows.
4. Why does the Radley place fascinate Scout, Jem and Dill?
The three boys seem fascinated by the Radley place because the family seems so off compared to the rest of the people in Maycomb. They don’t go to church, they rarely see the wife and the husband coughs in his way of acknowledging a passersby. Their drapes are drawn on Sundays, and Sundays are when you invite people over. Their son, who years ago got into legal trouble, is never seen during the day. Scout, Jem and Dill are interested and curious, mischievous young kids who are looking for excitement and a thrill.
5. What do you notice about the narrative voice and viewpoint in the novel?
The narrator in this novel is the voice of the younger sister Scout. In this novel at the beginning the narrator gives a brief summary of the town and what it was like years ago. The narrator says, “Then that was the summer Dill came to us”. The narrator is telling the story of a summer from her past in Maycomb when she was little girl.
1. Why is Scout so looking forward to starting school?
From Scout’s tree house she watched and learned the games the students played at recess and lunch, watching Jem’s red jacket through wriggling circles of blind man’s buff. Scout enjoyed watching and sharing their misfortunes and minor victories, “I longed to join them.”
2. Why does Jem not want anything to do with Scout at school? Is his behavior typical of an older child?
Jem is going into grade five, while Scout is going into grade one. Jem will be around his friends that are his age, and as an older child typically he does not want his little brother tagging along and ruining his fun. They could play with each other when they got home, but school was different, “I was not to approach him with requests to enact a chapter of Tarzan and the Ant Men, to embarrass him with references to his private life, or tag along behind him at recess and noon. I was to stick to the first grade, and he would stick the fifth.”
3. What do you think of Miss Caroline Fisher as a teacher? Can you find qualities which would make her good or not so good at her job?
Scouts first grade teacher Miss Caroline Fisher seemed to be nervous on her first day of the job, but also a poor teacher. Instead of criticizing Scouts ability to read and write impeccable, she should have embraced it and encouraged the other kids to improve and learn how to read and print like Scout. Even though this story is dated in the era when teachers could abuse students, Miss Fisher could have handled the situations better.
Who is Calpurnia? What is her place in the Finch household?
Calpurnia is the Finch’s cook and has been working for them every since Jem was born. She is a colored woman who Atticus feels has more education than other colored folks.
What is Walter Cunningham like? What does his behavior during lunch suggest about his home life?
Walter Cunningham comes from a poor farming family. He has no shoes and his English isn’t that great. This is his third year taking grade one, because he missed school in the past to help his dad on the farm for their crop season. He has pale skin due to lake of nutrition and doesn’t always have a meal to eat. He seems like a quite, pleasant boy who isn’t rude or troublesome. His behavior during lunch suggests that at home he works and doesn’t have any time to play and enjoy being a kid.
What do you think of the way Atticus treats Walter?
I think Atticus treats Walter with respect and courteous. He makes conversations to Walter about crops and their farm because that’s what Walter can talk about. Atticus cares for Walter by feeding him a healthy meal that he may not see very often at home.
. Does Scout learn anything from Walter's visit? What do you think this is?
I think that Scout learns from Walter’s visit that no matter how much money a family owns, you still must respect them. Walter was their company, and Scout learned from Calpurnia that, “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.” She learns that no matter who people are that step into their house, they are their company, so you should treat them like one.
Atticus says that you never really understand a person “until you climb into his skin and walk around in it”. What does this mean? Is it an easy thing for Scout to learn? (In the last chapter of the novel, Scout repeats this, but she changes “skin” to “shoes” - this is probably not a mistake: Harper Lee suggests that Scout cannot clearly recall exactly what Atticus said and when, but the reader can check this!)
By what Atticus says he means that unless you are that particular person you can’t understand their feelings, hardships and life style. If you were to live a day in their shoes then you would understand them. Scout will eventually learn the meaning of this, but for now she is too judgmental to grasps what message her father was saying.
What do you learn in this chapter about the Ewells?
The Ewells are a large family and many of them go to the school for a day, “They come first day every year than leave…You’re suppose to mark em absent the rest of the year,” replied one of the girls.
. What does Scout think of current fashions in education?
What superstitions do the children have in connection with the Radley house?
The children of Maycomb county have superstitions that if you eat anything on the school ground that dropped from the Radley house you will die. Going on the Radley property will also come back at you.
Why do the children make Boo's story into a game?
The children make Boo’s story into a game because they are simply board. They get to use their imaginations to play and create their game to resemble what they think goes on inside the Radley house, and events that have taken place there.
. What do they do in this game? Do you think the game is an accurate version of what happens in the Radleys' home?
In the game they re-enact Mrs. Radley played by Scout sweeping the porch. Dill was old Mr. Radley and would walk with a newspaper and cough when they said hello. Jem played the role of Boo, “He went under front steps and shrieked and howled from time to time too.” They eventually have different scenes filled with dialogue. They do a scene where Boo stabs the scissors into his father’s leg and Mrs. Radley runs of the house screaming. I don’t think that the scenes that they played portraying what goes on inside the Radley home are true. Since the Radley house is so queer and suspicious their minds wonder and create the scenes that they act out.
5. What might be the cause of the laughter from inside the house?
The laughter from inside the Radley’s house could have been from a member of the family, even Boo. Someone or the people in the house could be laughing how Scout was in utter shock when she was on their lawn tangled in the tire.
1. Describe Miss Maudie Atkinson? How typical is she of Maycomb's women? What do the children think of her?
She was a window who hated her house and would spend time working on her flower beds outside all day. She loved her garden and everything that grew in god’s earth. The children of Maycomb liked her very much. She would use their names and was polite when she talked to them. Scout, Dill and Jem and a treaty with her, "We could play on her lawn, eat her scuppernogs if we didn't jump on the arbor, and explore her vast back lot." Jem, Dill, and Scout enjoyed Miss Maudie's cakes that were the best in town. She would sit at night on her porch with Scout and the two of them would talk and watch the sun go down. I would say that she is not the typical Maycomb women. She isn't the gossip or rude type of person. She respects the neighborhood and the children. Since she isn't a farm wife and has a large family to mend the crops, so lives her life alone and spends time in her garden because she loves it as is able to, unlike other Maycomb women.
2. What does Miss Maudie tell Scout about Boo? How does this compare with what Scout already believes?
Miss Maudie tells Scout that she believes Boo, whose name is Mr. Arthur, is still most definitely alive. Scout asks her, "Do you think Boo Radley is still alive?"
“What a morbid question. But I suppose it’s a morbid subject. I know he’s alive, Jean Louise, because I haven’t seen him carried out yet.”Scout had heard laughter from inside the Radley’s house which is why she is determined that Boo is alive in that house, and Miss Maudie was able to clarify that with her.
3. Scout claims that “Dill could tell the biggest ones ” (lies) she ever heard. Why might Dill have told such lies?
Dill bragged about his life outside of Maycomb in the summer, “He had been up in the mail plane seventeen times, he had been to Nova Scotia, he had seen an elephant, and his Granddaddy was Brigadier General Joe Wheeler and left him his sword.” Dill may have lied to Jem and Scout so to hide is world back home from them, and so that they perceive his life as exciting and great.
4. What reasons does Atticus give for the children not to play the Boo Radley game? Do you think he is right? Why?
When Atticus catches the children playing their game he says, “What Mr. Radley did was his own business. If he wanted to come out he would. If he wanted to stay inside his own house he had the right to stay inside free from the attentions of inquisitive children. How would we like it if Atticus barged in on us without knocking, when we were in our rooms at night?”Atticus tells the children that imitating and acting out the roles of Boo Radely is disrespectful and that they should leave him alone. I think Atticus is right about how it’s Mr. Radley’s life and he decides how he wants to live it, and to not judge him and mistreat him.
1. Why does Scout disapprove of Jem's and Dill's plan of looking in at one of the Radleys' windows?
Scout disapproves of them looking in on one of the Radley’s windows because she knows that Boo is alive and inside the house. Ever since she heard laughter from inside she knew there was life in the house. Scout also felt empathy towards Mr. Radley and felt that they should bother him if he doesn’t want to be bothered.
2. What does Mr. Nathan Radley know about the intruders in his garden? Why does Miss Stephanie refer to a “negro” over whose head Mr. Nathan has fired?
Mr. Nathan Radley knows that the intruders were three small white people, “Says if anyone sees a white nigger around, that’s the one.” Miss Stephanie refers to the intruders as negro because she feels that only a colored person would go into the back yard of the Radley’s house, and that only such corruption could be caused by a “negro”.
3. Why does Dill's explanation of Jem's state of dress almost land him in trouble?
Dill’s explanation that they were playing strip poker which was why Jem hadn’t any pants on was their cover up for actually being the intruders on the Radley lot. Miss Rachel was upset and enrage for that they were gambling by her fishpool. That this nonsense was going on.
1. When Jem tells Scout about getting his trousers back, he tells her of something strange. What is this?
Jem tells Scout, "When I went back for my breeches-they were all in a tangle when I was gettin' out of em, I could get em loose. When I went back they were folded across the fence...like they were expecting me. They’d been sewed up." Jem feels like someone knew he was coming back for them, like they could read his mind.
2. Can you find any evidence that Jem is beginning to understand more than Scout about Boo Radley? What do you think this is?
Jem understands that Boo Radley may not be like what the gossip mill spreads about him. Jem knows before telling Scout that when he went back to get his pants they were folded and sewn up nicely. Jem realizes that Boo Radley wasn’t awful like he thought, but generous.
3. Does Jem still fear the gifts in the tree? Give reasons for your answer.
Jem at the beginning of the story feared taking anything that was on the Radley property because it could kill you! Now, Jem doesn't fear taking the gifts from the tree that’s on the Radley's property. Jem and Scout take the two dolls and Jem admires them as never seeing any look these that good. Then weeks later he takes chewing gum, which he really enjoyed. Then Jem becomes fascinated by the spelling medal that he found and brought that home with him too. The biggest item that was in the tree was an old pocket watch that didn't run, and had on the chain with an aluminum knife. Jem gets excited when he finds things in the tree and as Scout puts it, "The fact that everything on the Radley Place was poison having slipped Jem's memory.”
4. When the children plan to send a letter to the person who leaves the gifts, they are prevented. How does this happen? Who does it, and why might he do so?
The letter that Jem and Scout wrote, thanking the person for the gifts he or she left for them, never got sent because the knot-whole in the tree was filled with cement. Mr. Nathan Radley filled the whole with cement, because he said, "Tree's dying, You plug em' with cement when their sick." Nathan Radley may have done so because the tree in fact could be dying, though he could have also filled it up so that his brother wouldn't be able to leave items in the whole for Jem and Scout to find.
1. Why does Scout quiz Atticus about his visit to the Radley house? How much does Atticus tell her?
Scout quizzes her had about his visit to the Radley house because she thinks Mrs. Radley, who died that winter, was caused by Boo. When Atticus returns he tells her that Mrs. Radley had died from natural causes. When asked, Atticus said that he did not see Mr. Author inside the house. Scout was inquisitive and curious as to what it would be like to be inside the house.
2. What is the “near libel” which Jem puts in the front yard? How do Miss Maudie and Atticus react to it?
“You’ve perpetrated a near libel here in the front yard. We’ve got to disguise this fellow”, said Atticus. Jem’s snowman that was in the front yard at first resembled their neighbor Mr. Avery. Atticus felt that making caricatures of the neighbors was wrong, and that Mr. Avery may not come to the conclusion that the snowman just happened to look like him in a cross manner. Jem then put Miss Maudie’s sunhat on the snowman’s head, and her hedge clippers into his arm. Miss Maudie, when she sees Jem’s creation says, “Jem Finch. You devil, bring me back my hat sir!” She reacts to this in a jokingly way, not as if she were hot headed or anything.
3. Why does Atticus save Miss Maudie's oak rocking chair?
Atticus saves Miss Maudie’s rocking chair because it’s a position of hers that can always be with her. Scout felt that it was sensible of her father to save the oak rocking chair because Miss Maudie valued it the most.
4. When Atticus asks Scout about the blanket around her shoulders, what does Jem realize?
Jem realizes that Mr. Nathan Radley was at the fire helping out. He comes up with the consumption that Boo Radley put the blanket on Scout when she wasn’t looking and didn’t notice. Jem also realizes that by not knowing this happened he wasn’t protecting his sister and obeying his dad’s rules by staying outside the Radley’s gate and to not let his sister out of his sight.
5. Explain what Atticus means by telling Jem not to let his discovery “inspire ” him to “further glory”? Is there any reason why Jem might now do as his father says?
Atticus meant by this quote that Jem should not get carried away in his adventures of trespassing, and not to continue stealing items from the tree. After Jem spilled all of their secrets about the knot-whole and everything else, Atticus didn’t want Jem to get the idea that he could continue this after pouring out their secrets they’ve been keeping form him. Jem might very well do and follow up with what his father said in order to obtain his father’s trust.
1. How well does Atticus feel he should defend Tom Robinson? Is it usual for (white) lawyers to do their best for black clients in Alabama at this time?
Atticus feels he should defend Tom Robinson otherwise if he didn’t he wouldn’t be able to hold up is head when he walked through town. Atticus wouldn’t be representing the county in the legislature if he turned down this case. Atticus also says that one of the reasons is that, “I couldn’t even tell you or Jem not to do something again.” This case that Attics is working on particularly effects him personally, the only case like this that has happened to him in his career. During this time period all white lawyers were to defend black clients. In the novel it suggests that lawyers who want to obtain their status should work hard on a case defending a black person just as much as defending a white person, even if there is no hope that you will win the trial.
2. Scout and Jem have “mixed feelings” about Christmas? What are these feelings and why?
Jem and Scout felt the exciting feelings of their Christmas would be decorating the tree and seeing their Uncle Jack Finch. On Christmas Eve they would met their Uncle at Maycomb junction and he would spend a week with them. The down side of their Christmas was having Uncle Jimmy, but especially Aunt Alexandra and there grandson Francis come over. Scout and Jem loved spending time with their Uncle Jack who was fun and engaged with his niece and nephew. Aunt Alexandra and Francis who were visiting them for Christmas this year was a flip side to their Christmas. Jem and Scout didn’t get along with Francis and therefore not with Aunt Alexandra. Her husband wouldn’t even acknowledge Scout and never talked to her other than the time he said, “Get off the fence!” Scout and Jem weren’t close to them as they were to Uncle Jack.
3. Uncle Jack Finch tells Scout that she is growing out of her pants. What does this mean and why might he say it?
Uncle Jack means that Scout is growing up being more like her father than her mother, using the words damn and hell often. He may have said this because he wants his niece to grow up being a lady and to not get into trouble saying those words. He also may be referring to the fact that she is wearing pants and most girls her age are wearing skirts and dresses unlike herself.
4. When Francis talks to Scout he reveals an unpleasant feature of Aunt Alexandra. What is this?
Scout and Francis are talking about Dill when Francis then makes a remark about what his Grandmother said that upsets Scout. Francis says to Scout, “Grandma says it’s bad enough he lets you all run wild, but now he’s turned out a nigger-lover we’ll never be able to walk the streets of Maycomb again. He’s ruining the family.” Francis goes on to tell Scout that Aunt Alexandra knows it isn’t their fault that Atticus lets them run around with stray dogs, that that it is his own business.
5. Does Scout learn anything from overhearing Atticus's conversation with Uncle Jack? What might this be?
Scout believes that years later she realizes that her father was letting her overhear their conversation because he wanted her to hear it. Scout learns from Uncle Jack and her father’s conversation that she will have to endure some ugly things really soon and how her father knows Jem will be able to keep his cool, but he doesn’t know how well Scout will handle it. She knows from this conversation that they are talking about the trail involving the Ewells and Tom Ribinson. She knows that Atticus is going to try and get them through this without bitterness and without catching Maycomb’s brutal disease. She hears her dad say, “I just hope that Jem and Scout come to me for their answers instead of listening to the town.” Scout learns that she will have to be on her best behavior and not beat anybody up when kids tease her, and to be strong.
6. Read the final sentence of this chapter. Explain in your own words what it means and why it might be important in the story.
The last sentence in this chapter refers to Scout looking back to when she eavesdrops on her father’s and Uncle Jack’s conversation about the trial coming up in the summer. It means that at the time Scout couldn’t figure out why her father let her hear so much of their conversation only to then years later realize that her father wanted her to hear it. Attics wanted Scout to listen so that way she would understand in a better way than lecturing her about his situation and what will soon be happening. This sentence is important to the story because it is a flashback that the author uses to connect Scout from her past to connecting it to the present.
1. Scout says that “Atticus was feeble”. Do you think that this is her view as she tells the story or her view when she was younger? Does she still think this after the events recorded in this chapter?
I think that when Scout says, “Atticus was feeble”, that she was referring to how she viewed her father at the age of almost fifty when she was younger. Scout was still young and when other kids fathers could pick of their kids and play football and tackle them, and Scout’s father couldn’t, she saw him as ‘feeble’. After the events in this chapter Scout does not see her father as being ‘feeble’, but as ‘Ol One-shot’, the deadest shot in Maycomb County during his time.
2. In this chapter Atticus tells his children that “it's a sin to kill a mockingbird”. What reason does he give for saying this?
Atticus said to Jem one day, “I’d rather you shoot at tin cans in the back yard, but I know you’ll go after birds. Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can’t hit em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” Miss Maudie explains to the children that it is a sin to do so because all that bluejays do is sing and make music for people to enjoy; and that they don’t dig up people’s gardens or nest in corncribs.
3. Why does Heck Tate not want to shoot Tim Johnson?
Heck Tate does not want to shoot Jim Johnson because he knows that it is a one shot job and that if he misses it will go straight inside the Radley’s home and he isn’t that good of a shooter to get the target.
4. Near the end of this chapter Atticus cuts off Heck Tate as he is speaking to Jem. What might Heck have been about to say, and why would Atticus want to stop him from saying it?
Atticus had cut off Heck when he said, “Didn’t you know your daddy’s-”, when he was speaking to Jem. Heck may have been about to tell Jem of his father’s history of being a dead shot years ago. Atticus wouldn’t want Jem to know this because Jem and Scout just got their own riffles for Christmas and not want Jem to get the idea of going out shooting. Atticus also wants to maintain his good example to his kids and leave that part of his life out of their lives.
5. Jem and Scout have different views about telling people at school how well Atticus can shoot. Explain this difference. Which view is closer to your own?
Scouts views on telling kids at school about Atticus’s ability to shoot, is to tell everyone about it. She feels that because, “Ain’t everybody’s daddy the deadest shot in Maycomb County”, people should know, and that maybe they might stop teasing her if they knew. Jem’s views are to not say anything about it at school. Jem says, “I’d reckon if he wanted us to know it, he’da told us. If he was proud of it, he’da told us.” Both views are the opposite of what they want and not want to tell the other kids at school on Monday. My views are closer to those of Jem’s. I wouldn’t tell the other kids at school about Atticus being a dead shot because Atticus wouldn’t want me to spread it around.
1. How does Atticus advise Jem to react to Mrs. Dubose's taunts?
Atticus told Jem, “She’s an old lady, and she’s ill. You just hold your head high and be a gentleman. Whatever she says to you, it’s your job not to let her make you mad.”Atticus advises Jem to ignore them and act polite around Mrs. Dubose.
2. What does Mrs. Dubose say about the children's mother? How does Jem feel about this?
Mrs. Dubose told the children that it was a pity their father never re-married after their mother’s death. She said that a lovelier lady than our mother never lived, and that it was heartbreaking the way Atticus let her children run wild. Jem still remembers their mother and went ‘livid’ when Mrs. Dubose said this. He doesn’t like the fact that she talked about their mother and Atticus like that, and mentioning the way Atticus raised them.
3. What request does Mrs. Dubose make of Jem? Is this a fair punishment for his “crime”?
Mrs. Dubose requests that Jem comes over every day after school and on Saturday to read to her out loud for two hours for a month. I think this is fair punishment for Jem’s crime. Since reading to Mrs. Dubose will take up loads of his time, he will realize never to anything like that again, and be able to learn from it.
4. Explain in your own words what Atticus thinks of insults like “nigger-lover”. How far do you agree with him?
Atticus explains that people use the term “nigger-lover” because they think someone thinks more highly of them than there self. Disrespectful people use the term to label someone who has compassion for any type of person. It shows what kind of person they are when they use that term on someone to make them feel bad, when you should feel sorry for them that they insulted you on a wrong and bad name. I agree with Atticus that people used the term to identify those who favored black people, and that the people who used the term were trashy, ignorant people. In this chapter Atticus says something that I don’t agree with, “It’s never an insult to be called what someone thinks is a bad name. It just shows you how poor that person is, it doesn’t hurt you.” I don’t agree with this because if you were called a bad name you are going to be hurt. Jem and Scout show that in this chapter when they want to stand up for their father when he is called a “nigger-lover” they get angry, and are hurt.
5. Why, in Atticus's view, was Mrs. Dubose “a great lady”?
Attics feels that Mrs. Dubose was a great lady because her views were her own and different from other peoples. She had courage, “It’s when you know your licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what… According to her views, she died beholden to nothing and no body. She was the bravest person I ever knew.” Her last couple months were a struggle, but she maintained hopeful and herself.
6. Atticus says that Mrs. Dubose is a model of real courage rather than “a man with a gun in his hand”. What does he mean? Do you think he is right?
Atticus means that you can have courage that comes from within; you don’t have to shoot a gun to be powerful and brave. Jem can show courage by standing up for someone in a non-violent way. Mrs. Dubose demonstrated real courage when she won her end of the battle. I think Atticus’s definition of courage goes both ways. All people can have courage without holding a gun in their hand. The women and men who have fought and are fighting in war demonstrate courage of their knowledge, determination and fear. Though I believe that Atticus was referring to shooting tin cans, and ducks when he had this conversation with Jem.
7. Chapters ten and eleven are the last two chapters in the first part of the book. Explain why Harper Lee chooses to end the first part here.
The author has ended the first part of this story at the end of chapter eleven because the reader knows that the next chapter will incline with suspense. Summer will almost be there, and Dill will be coming for the summer and the three of them will have an exciting summer learning more about Boo Radley. Atticus will be going to trial and defending Tom Robinson. A new chapter begins to the story, “To Kill A Mockingbird”; Jem and Scout will have learned more and understand the meaning of respect and courage. Only the author knows what lies ahead in Maycomb County.
1. Comment on Jem's and Scout's visit to First Purchase church.
Jem and Scout were welcomed by everyone except Lula when they got to the church. Opposed to when they go to church on Sundays, there weren’t any sign of a piano, organ, hymn-books, or church programs. What was different than when they went to church was that Zeebo read out loud and sing a verse from a hymn-book as they people in church repeated him after each line. At the end everyone had donated a total of ten dollars that would be given to Helen Robinson to help her while she raises three kids, while her husband Tom is on trial.
2. What new things does Scout learn here about how the black people live?
Scout realized that black people who financially had nothing showed up to church. She saw Zeebo, who was their garbage collector act church reading out hymns. Scout also learned that black people weren’t able to give as much money wise when the church collected money for Mrs. Robinson, “Slowly, painfully, the ten dollars was collected.”
3. What does Scout learn from Calpurnia's account of Zeebo's education?
Scout learns that when Zeebo was little there weren’t any schools and Calpurnia taught him how to read by reading the bible and the novel Blackstone’s Commentaries.
4. Explain why Calpurnia speaks differently in the Finch household, and among her neighbors at church.
While Calpurnia is in the Finch household she knows how to talk proper English to them, while most black people at the time did not know how. Calpurnia said that for starters she was black, “If I talked white-folks talk at church, and with my neighbors, they’d think I was putting on airs to beat Moses.” She explains to Scout and Jem that it would be out of place if they at home talked colored talk, just like it’s out of place for her to talk white talk when she is around black people. Calpurnia says, “Folks don’t like to have somebody around knowin more than they do. It aggravates em’.”
1. Why does Aunt Alexandra come to stay with Atticus and his family? What is she like?
Aunt Alexandra comes to stay with the Finch family because Atticus and herself feel that Scout needs to have some feminine influence around the house. Alexandra would teach Scout to behave, dress, and act like a young lady. Aunt Alexandra is very strict about things that she does not like. She gets along with all of the neighbors; had long visits with Stepanie Crawford, spoke to Rachel, had acquaintances with Nathan Radley, and baked cakes with Maudie Atkinson. She did not get along with Jem and Scout though. They didn’t see eye to eye, and they had their arguments.
2. Read the first two things Aunt Alexandra says when she comes to the Finch home: "Put my bag in the front bedroom, Calpurnia" and "Jean Louise, stop scratching your head". Are these typical of her or not?
This is a typical remark made by Jem and Scout’s Aunt Alexandra. She is very picky and not one to do things herself, but as to order people around doing them. She is not close to the kids, and doesn’t like Calpurnia being an influence around her niece and nephew.
3. Alexandra thinks Scout is “dull” (not clever). Why does she think this, and is she right? Are all adults good at knowing how clever young people are?
Aunt Alexandra thinks Scout is dull because she saw her one day acting all sluggish. Alexandra was wrong of herself to make this remark because you can’t tell how clever a person is by looking at them. You can’t make judgments on someone when you don’t know how they are feeling, or what kind of a day they have been through. Not all adults are able to notice how clever young children can be. If they spend time with them, or notice how they think, then adults will come to realize that children have their good days and bad days, but are always clever in how they speak and present themselves to you.
4. How does Aunt Alexandra involve herself in Maycomb's social life?
Alexandra became acquainted with many people in Maycomb, and became Secretary of the Maycomb Amanuensis Club.
5. Comment on Aunt Alexandra's ideas about breeding and family. Why does Atticus tell them to forget it? Who is right, do you think?
Alexandra’s thoughts are that the children are not from run-of- the- mill people, that they are products of several generations’ gentle breeding. Alexandra feels that Scout needs to act and behave like a little lady, and for Jem to act like a gentlemen, and for them to try to live up to their name. She thinks that the children should live up to their name and to know all about the Finch family history. Atticus tells them to forget about it because he was put up to convince Jem and Scout of this by Alexandra. These weren’t his thoughts on how to raise and make decisions for his children. I think Atticus was right because he knows his children better than anyone, and he should make the decisions on how to raise them and bring them up. Atticus knows that the children can’t do all that and remember everything the Finch’s are supposed to do. He feels Jem and Scout should live their lives the way they are presently living now.
1. Comment on Atticus's
explanation of rape
. How suitable is this as an answer to Scout.
Atticus’s explanation of rape was, “Carnal knowledge of a female by force and without consent.”
Scout doesn’t make much of the explanation because she still doesn’t understand what rape is. Scout didn’t understand how serious of matter it is because she then says to Atticus, “Well if that’s all it is why did Calpurnia dry me up when I asked her what it was?”
2. Why does Alexandra think Atticus should dismiss Calpurnia? How does Atticus respond to the suggestion?
Alexandra thinks that Atticus should dismiss Calpurnia because she feels having her around the kids makes it a toxic environment for them to be around a black. She disagrees with Calpurnia about taking them to church on Sunday at the black’s church and that it’s wrong for Scout to spend time at Calpurnia’s house. Atticus makes his opinion loud and clear, “She’s not leaving this house till she wants to. She’s a faithful member of this family and you’ll simply have to except things the way they are. We still need Cal as much as we ever did.” Atticus lets Alexandra know that Calpurnia is always welcome and that she will have to learn how to respect her.
3. Why is Scout pleased when Jem fights her back? Why is she less pleased when he tells Atticus about Dill?
Scout is pleased when her brother fights her back because she knows that that means they are still equals. Scout isn’t pleased with Jem for telling Atticus about Dill’s arrival that night because Jem had broke the remaining code of their childhood.
4. What do we learn from Dill's account of his running away?
We learn from Dill that his parents weren’t caring for him. They gave him stuff but never interacted with him. He felt that him being their ruined everything and that’s why he ran away. He took the train from the Meridian to Maycomb junction, and then walked about eleven miles to Maycomb before riding the remainder of the way on the backboard of a cotton wagon.
1. What is the “nightmare” that now descends upon the children?
The children’s nightmare was when one evening there were a group of men wanting to speak to Atticus. This normally represented either death, or politics. They were discussing the trial and Tom Robinson. Mr. Link Deas said to Atticus that he would lose everything with his involvement in the trial. This frightened the children.
2. What was (and is) the Ku Klux Klan? What do you think of
Atticus's comment"The Ku Klux/'s gone. It'll never come back."
The Ku Klux Klan was a political organization in ninety twenty that were considered a gang. When Atticus says that they are gone and won’t come back, he makes it sound like they are no longer alive; therefore they will never be able to set foot on Maycomb soil. That or the Klan has been in jail all this time.
3. How does Jem react when Atticus tells him to go home, and why?
Jem firmly stands still and doesn’t budge as he shakes his head replying to Atticus that is not going anywhere. The both face each other, their fists clenched on their hips, looking exactly alike showing how serious they were. Jem decides not to go home, but to stay because he knows what would happen to his dad once he left. The men that were there wouldn’t touch him as long as his kids were present. Jem wanted to stand up for his dad and protect him.
4. What persuades the lynching-party to give up their attempt on Tom's life?
Mr. Cunningham addresses that they all should leave, after Scout had talked to Mr. Cunningham about his sun Walter, asked him about his entailment, and spoke about how she thought entailments were bad.
5. Comment on the way Scout affects events without realizing it at the time.
Scout had addressed this to the entire aggregation without knowing it when she said that, “entailments were bad”. While they were all looking at her Scout said that, “Entailments are bad an all, but you said not to worry, it takes a long time sometimes…that you’d all ride it out together…” Entailment means bequeathing property. Mr. Cunningham may be living on land that he does not clearly own or could be able to sell it, nor mortgage it. Scout would know about Mr. Cunningham’s entailment because Atticus would have mentioned it to her when they were talking in the living room that perhaps Mr. Cunningham wanted Atticus to resolve an entailment problem.
1. What “subtle change” does Scout notice in her father?
Scout notices a change in the way her father talks to her Aunt Alexandra. Atticus hat stopped speaking to her in outrage, frustration and irritation. His voice was now quiet and even though his words seemed like he was telling her, it seems like all his energy had been drained out with the preparation of the trial coming up.
2. What sort of person is Dolphus Raymond?
After his wife the day they got married shot herself he has carried around quilt all these years because he believes she shot herself because of his affair with a colored woman. He is a drunk that fills kidneys with sorrow. Mr. Raymond is a great father to all of his children of mixed decent. He sat next the people of color and not the whites in the trial; his persona seems to be that he does not care of what people think and just live his live.
3. How does Reverend Sykes help the children see and hear the trial? Is he right to do?
Reverend Sykes takes Jem and Scout up the stairs to watch the trail from the balcony. The first floor is where the whites sit which was all packed. In the balcony is where the black people sit. Atticus though may not want his children to witness all the trial because some may too much to handle for them. His choice may not have been approved by citizens in Maycomb or Aunt Alexandra, but his choice would have been approved by Atticus for his children to be seated in the balcony.
4. Comment on Judge Taylor's attitude to his job. Does he take the trial seriously or not?
Judge Taylor seems to take his job casually, but realistically he takes a firm grip on all of the proceedings that comes in front of him. He allows smoking in the court room and smokes himself during a trial. This particular trial he does not seem to be taking seriously, mostly because the accused is a black person and defendant is a white person.
1. What are the main points in Heck Tate's evidence? What does Atticus show in his
of Sheriff Tate?
The main points are that Heck was fetched by Mr. Ewell on the night of November twenty first. He did not call or take Mayella, Mr. Ewell’s daughter to a doctor. He said that he fetched Tom Robinson and Mayella identified him as being the person who assaulted her. He confirmed that her right side of her face she had a black eye coming. Atticus asks Sheriff Tate questions about Mayella injuries that make his client look bad because he probably will later on in the trial reverse the situation and refer back to what Mr. Tate had said.
2. What do we learn indirectly of the home life of the Ewell family in this chapter?
We learn that some people think the Ewell’s have six children, others say ten, and that they all had dirty unclean faces. The Ewell’s live behind the town garbage dump and on their property there are axes, shovels, shoes, hammers, rakes, fruit jars, not the typical outdoor arrangement people had. The Ewell’s are a very poor family that lives as guests to the county in prosperity as well as in depths of a depression.
3. What do you learn from Bob Ewell's evidence?
From Bob Ewell’s evidence from the witness stand tells us that he was out when Mayella was assaulted and heard her when he came back from collecting wood and ran to the house. Instead of going inside he peered through the window to see Tom Robinson rapping his little girl. He said that Tom had run out the other door and that he couldn’t catch him. Mr. Ewell agreed with the terms of his daughter’s injuries that Mr. Tate said. Mr. Ewell also did not take Mayella to be checked out by a doctor for a doctor to examine her injuries and her condition.
4. Why does Atticus ask Bob Ewell to write out his name? What does the jury see when he does this?
Atticus gets Mr. Ewell to write out his name on a piece of paper to that the jury can see whether he is left or right handed. When the jury watches they notice that Mr. Ewell writes with his left hand. When Atticus asks Bob if he is ambidextrous he response is, “I’m most positively not, I can use one hand as good as the other”. Atticus is trying to put pieces together and see if the possibility that Mr. Ewell hit his own daughter is possible or not.
1. Is Mayella like her father or different from him? In what ways?
Mayella is like her father in the ways that they both talk the same; not proper English, almost like slang. They’re both ignorant and disrespectful in the way they talk. They both have a temper and know little knowledge and have no form of education what’s so ever.
2. What might be the reason for Mayella's crying in the court?
Mayella’s reason for crying in the church may be to try and get empathy from the jury; for her to lure them in to her side of the case. On the other hand it may have been really emotional and hard for her to get up on the stand to testify against Tom Robinson, facing him, and telling either the truth or a lie.
3. How does Mayella react to Atticus's politeness? Is she used to people being polite?
When Atticus refers to Mayella as ma’ma and Miss Mayella, she feels like he is mocking and making fun of her. Mayella is never spoken to in that form of politeness and to her it comes across that Atticus is insulting her, when really he is just doing his job.
4. How well does Mr. Gilmer prove Tom's guilt in the eyes of the reader (you) and in the eyes of the jury? Can you suggest why these might be different?
1. What made Tom visit the Ewell's house in the first place?
Mayella was sitting on the porch and asked Tom to come inside to fix one of the hinges on the door because it was coming off. Then Mayella asked him if he could stand up on a chair and get a box from the top of the chiffarobe.
2. Why does Scout think that Mayella Ewell was “the loneliest person in the world”?
Scout thinks this because in Tom’s testimony he said that Mayella always talked to him, and for her to talk to a black person, showed Scout that she mustn’t have any friends. She hung around with her brothers and sisters and never socialized with any but Tom because there was no one to socialize with.
3. In your own words explain Mayella's relationship with her father.
Mayella’s relationship with her father seems distant. They don’t have a bond or connection like Scout and Jem do with Atticus. It seems like her father isn’t around much, which leaves Mayella to fend for herself. When Mr. Ewell is around, he drinks, and it is a possibility that he may be abusive to Mayella.
4. How does Dill react to this part of the trial? Why is this, in your opinion?
Dill gets emotional during the trial when Mr. Gilmer asks Tom questions in an impolite manner. He does not talk to Tom the way Atticus talked to Mr. Ewell and Mayella. His tone is harsh and Dill finds it upsetting that it isn’t equal because of Tom Robinson’s race.
1. Scout says that “Mr. Dolphus Raymond was an evil man”. Is she right?
Scout’s assumption of Mr. Dolphus being an evil man is because she knows he goes around drinking alcohol and that he isn’t accepted by the black or white community as well as his kids and wife. Scout is wrong though. Mr. Raymond drinks Coca-Cola and is polite to talk to. He is not evil, but wholesome.
2. In most states of the USA people who drink alcohol in public places are required to hide their bottle in a paper bag. Why does Dolphus Raymond hide
in a bag?
Mr. Raymond hides his Coca-Cola in a bag and pretends that it is whiskey that way the people would have a reason to think that is the way he is and he is never going to change. People could never understand that he lives like he does because that’s the way he wants to live. This way people don’t see the harm in him being married to a black woman and having “mixed” children.
3. What, according to Atticus, is the thing that Mayella has done wrong?
Explain, in your own words, Atticus's views on people's being equal.
The thing that Mayella has done wrong is that she had broken the code of their society. Mayella had tried to put her offence away from her. Atticus is trying to say that Mayella has told a lie so to hide the fact that she broke a code. Atticus’s views of people being equal are that no matter what ethnical background or race, education, or wealth, they are all human. They all deserve to be treated equal because they are the same as one another.
1. What does Jem expect the verdict to be? Does Atticus think the same?
Jem expects the verdict to be not guilty because after hearing all the evidence the jury knows that the evidence supporting Tom’s innocence is stronger than the evidence supporting Tom’s guilt. Deep down Atticus wants the jury to announce not quality in favor for his client, but he knows the way the jury will decide; on Tom Robinson’s race, and not what she is charged on.
2. What is unusual about how long it takes the jury to reach a verdict? Is the verdict predictable or not?
What is unusual about the length of time the jury took to reach a verdict was that it showed that they thought thoroughly and discussed the evidence for Tom’s charge. The jury took a longer than expected time in reaching a verdict. The verdict is predictable because the jury was all white farmers from out of town, and where faced with Mayella identifying Tom Robinson as the one who raped her. Tom being black was going to be more of an issue than his charge because people where more likely to discriminate him for his color and charge him anyway because of that.
3. As Scout waits for the verdict, she thinks of earlier events. What are these and how do they remind us of the novel's central themes?
Scout remembered what Jem had told her when he was going through physiological research, “If enough people-a stadium full, maybe-were to concentrate on one thing, such as setting a tree afire in woods, that the tree would ignite of its own accord.” Scout also remembered a morning in February in the transition of winter to spring. These relate to them of the story being that the harder you strive for something the more joy you will have at the end of it.
1. Although Atticus did not want his children in court, he defends Jem's right to know what has happened. Explain, in your own words, Atticus's reasons for this. (Look at the speech beginning, “This is their home, sister”.
Atticus’s reasons for allowing Jem to stay and watch the trial was because he wanted his son to understand the society Maycomb lives in; prejudice. Atticus also knows that by taking the position of defending Tom Robinson he has put Scout and Jem into it. Since Jem is in it Atticus feels that Jem might as well hear the trial and understand the meaning of it all. Atticus knows that the choices he made can’t erase and go back and change them.
2. Miss Maudie tells Jem that “things are never as bad as they seem”. What reasons does she give for this view?
Miss Maudie’s reasons for this view is that, “There are some men who are borne to do unpleasant jobs for us. Your father is one of them.” People like Jem’s dad can fight for rights and justice of people and that that is a good thing.
3. Why does Dill say that he will be a clown when he grows up? Do you think he would keep this ambition for long?
Dill says, “There aint one thing in this world I can do about folks except laugh.” Dill explains that he will be in the Cyrus and laugh his head off. I don’t think Dill will make a career out of being a clown because he will realize all the travelling around and little pay won’t get him a stable home.
4. This story is set in the 1930s but was published in 1960. Have attitudes to racism remained the same (in the USA and the UK) or have there been any changes (for the better or worse) since then, in your view?
Racism compared to back in the 1930’s isn’t the same as it is today. Black people in today’s society have rights and privileges like the white people during this era did. Although there are many people that are still prejudice towards blacks in this day of the game. Older generations seem to racists rather than the younger population in society. Every year in the town of Charleston, Mississippi, Charleston High School had segregated proms. It wasn’t till 2008 that they had their first integrated prom with the help of actor Morgan Freeman. (the kids wanted to have a prom, not two or three, and for everyone to be treated equal, it was their parents who wanted the separate proms) Some people and places want change, and others don’t.
5. Why does Bob Ewell feel so angry with Atticus? Do you think his threat is a real one, and how might he try to “get” Atticus?
Bob Ewell is angry with Atticus because he exposed him as being an abusive drunk who may have beat his daughter Mayella. Most of the town saw that and Mr. Ewell is now seen as that person and not what people had thought about him before. I don’t think his threat would ever be taken into action, but I do believe out of anger Mr. Ewell meant this so that is views and hatred would get across to Atticus.
1. What do you think of Atticus's reaction to Bob Ewell's challenge? Should he have ignored Bob, retaliated or done something else?
2. What is “circumstantial evidence”? What has it got to do with Tom's conviction?
Circumstantial evidence indirectly proves a fact. If the evidence isn’t completely clear or there isn’t enough evidence for the case to be backed up on. Tom’s conviction is very much similar because the trial’s evidence was surrounded by what Tom said, and then what Mayella said. There wasn’t any
evidence to support each side.
3. What does Atticus tell Scout about why the jury took so long to convict Tom?
Possibly because of an inevitable verdict, but in this case it was because one of the Cunninghams took considerable wearing down-in the beginning he was rarin’ for an outright acquittal.
4. Why does Aunt Alexandra accept that the Cunninghams may be good but are not “our kind of folks”? Do you think that people should mix only with others of the same social class? Are class-divisions good or bad for societies?
Aunt Alexandra explains that even though they are good and kind people, they shouldn’t socialize with them because unlike the Finch household they are poor. I feel that everyone no matter what little or big amount of wealth should socialize with one another. Class divisions are bad for society because that way people socialize with the same people over and over and not get to know everyone else. Without diversity everyone isn’t equal.
5. At the end of this chapter, Jem forms a new theory about why Boo Radley has never left his house in years. What is this? How likely is it to be true, in your opinion?
Jem comes up with the theory that the reason Boo Radley never comes out of his house, is because he wants to stay inside. This is likely to be true because Boo doesn’t feel welcomed by the citizens in Maycomb; from children and adults because there is so much gossip about the way he looks and what he did. Staying inside is a way for Boo Radley to hid his identity and not deal with the people of Maycomb.
1. Do you think the missionary ladies are sincere in worrying about the “Mrunas” (a tribe in Africa)? Give reasons for your answer.
I think the women do worry about the women in the tribe. They said, “They put women out in huts when their time came, they subjected children to terrible ordeals when they were thirteen, they were crawling with yaws and earworms, they chewed up and spat out the bark of a tree into a communal pot and then go drunk on it.” The missionary ladies probably also talk negatively on this tribe as well.
2. Compare the reactions of Miss Maudie and the other ladies when Scout says she is wearing her “britches” under her dress.
All of the other ladies laugh at Scout’s remark, and Miss Maudie just looked gravely down at Scout. Miss Maudie only laughed at Scout when she knew that Scout meant to be funny.
3. What is your opinion of the Maycomb ladies, as depicted in this chapter?
I think the ladies of Maycomb just live in those walls and don’t see the bigger picture of issues. Most of them seem to spread or go along with the gossip around town, and never seem to be interested in the world, but themselves. In this chapter the women come across as very hoity toddy.
4. Explain briefly how Tom was killed. What is Atticus's explanation for Tom's attempted escape. Do you think agree with Atticus?
How, in this chapter, do we see Aunt Alexandra in a new light? How does Miss Maudie support her?
Tom was shot seventeen times trying to escape the jail. Atticus’s explanation for Tom’s escape it this, “I guess Tom was tired of white men’s chances and preferred to take his own.” I do agree with Atticus because I could see Tom wanting to escape from jail because he was locked up there for a crime he didn’t commit. It’s understandable for Tom to want to go back home to his wife and kids. In this chapter we see that Aunt Alexandra has a soft side. She discusses to Maudie about how the trial and its effect is tearing up her brother and how the town is letting Atticus do what there all too afraid of doing. Maudie supports Alexandra by saying, “Whether Maycomb knows it or not, we’re paying the highest tribute we can pay a man. We trust him to do it right, and that’s simple.” Maudie pictures a different side and view on this situation in Alexandra’s head.
1. How does Maycomb react to the news of Tom's death?
The town was interested in Tom Robinson’s death for two days, it only took two days for the information to spread across the county.
2. Comment on the idea that Tom's death was “typical”?
In Maycomb Tom’s death was considered typical, “They found it typical of a “nigger” to cut and run. Typical of a nigger’s mentality to have no plane, or thought for the future. Just run blind first chance he saw.”
3. Explain the contrast Scout draws between the court where Tom was tried and “the secret courts of men's hearts”. In what way are hearts like courts?
Scout contrasts that in the secret courts of men’s hearts Atticus had no case when he defended Tom Robinson. Atticus had used every tool to save Tom, but the moment Mayella opened her mouth and screamed, Tom was a dead man. Hearts beat and keep us alive and that’s what a court room does, it keeps you alive for as long and little as you can. When someone is convicted and sent away to jail, it’s like they’ve lost their beating heart opposed to someone found not guilty.
4. Why did Jem not want Scout to tell Atticus about Bob Ewell's "
One down and about two more to go" comment
Was this a wise thing to ask her to do?
Jem did not want Scout to tell Atticus this so that he wouldn’t be frightened or worried. This was not a good to tell Scout because it may be hard for her to keep this secret from her father. Since Scout is very close to her father she would want to tell him and protect him, asking Scout to do this could make matters worse.
1. In her lesson on Hitler, Miss Gates says that “we (American people) don't believe in persecuting anyone”. What seems odd to the reader about this claim?
What is odd by this statement is that Tom Robinson was persecuted. Persecuting means being treated unfairly and cruelly, most often because of a person race or beliefs.
2. Why is Scout puzzled by Miss Gates' disapproval of Hitler?
Scout is puzzled because she knows not to hate anyone. Her teacher strongly hates Hitler because of the kind of person he was and how he treated the Jews. Scout knows that it isn’t right to persecute someone and doesn’t understand why it’s right for people to do that and hate others.
3. Why does Scout's question upset Jem? Is there a simple answer, or any answer, to the question (“How can you hate Hitler an’ then turn around an be ugly about folks right at home?”
The reason why Jem got upset over Scout’s questions could have been for two things. One could have been in school he had learned all about Hitler and couldn’t believe that Scout would compare Hitler to people in their community. Another reason could be because her question involved the trial and walking out of the court house. Jem knew that the “be ugly about folks” was referring to Tom Robinson and his dad Atticus. There is a simple reason for Scout’s question. People are rude to others whether they know them or not because they determine everything about you from hearing about you, and not knowing you. Some people have hatred to certain people that cross them, other people like Hitler hate him for what he did.
1. What three things does Bob Ewell do that alarm Aunt Alexandra?
The first thing is that Mr. Ewell got fired from the WPA for laziness. Then Bob Ewell openly accused Atticus of getting his job, which didn’t go over well with Miss Ruth. The second thing was that there was an intruder in Judge Taylor’s house. The third thing happened to Helen Robinson. For Helen to get to work if she went the shorter way passing the Ewell’s they’d chunked her. So she would then take a longer route to go to work. Then when she walked on the public rode Mr. Ewell stalked her all the way to Link Deas who threatened Bob to stay away from her. These incidences alarmed Aunt Alexandra because in a way the concerned the Finches.
2. Why, according to Atticus, does Bob Ewell bear a grudge? Which people does Ewell see as his enemies, and why?
Bob Ewell bares a grudge to anyone who was connected in the case because he knows that very few people in Maycomb believed his and Mayella’s yarns. That he thought he would be a hero, and all he got for his pain was…we’ll convict this Negro but get back to your dump. Mr. Ewell’s enemies are Atticus, Judge Taylor, and Helen Robinson because of their connection to the trial.
3. What was the purpose of the Halloween pageant? What practical joke had persuaded the grownups to have an organized event?
The purpose of the Halloween pageant was that children would create mischief and hang around Misses Tutti and Frutti’s cellar.
1. Comment on the way this chapter reminds the reader of earlier events in the novel.
The events earlier on in the novel when Jem, Dill and Scout go to the Radley house at night and end up running away and having to go back to retrieve Jem’s pants that got snagged by some wire, is similar to the events that happened in this chapter. This time it is Scout whose dress is left behind near the Radley lot.
2. Why does Jem say that Boo Radley must not be at home? What is ironic about this? (Is it true? Does he really mean it? Why might it be important for him and Scout that Boo should not be at home?)
Jem says that Boo mustn’t be home because there was no sound other than a mockingbird that if Boo was there would have gotten rid of. This is true because Boo probably wouldn’t have let the sound go on unless he wasn’t home. This is important for both of them because they are walking near the property and this way if he isn’t home they wouldn’t have any encounter with him.
3. Scout decides to keep her costume on while walking home. How does this affect her understanding of what happens on the way?
Since Scout’s costume has paint that is visible in the dark on the wires, this makes it easy for anyone to follow them. If she hadn’t of worn the costume it would have made it less easier for Mr. Ewell to follow them. Though she later finds out that by wearing her costume it saved her life by protecting her from Mr. Ewell.
4. Why had Atticus not brought a chair for the man in the corner? Who might this stranger be?
Scout first believes that the reason why Atticus did not bring a chair for the man in the corner was that he knew ways of country people far better than she did. This stranger is Arthur Radley (Boo) and probably is staying in the corner so to not be visible because he is so pale and unclean compared to the rest of them.
1. What causes the “shiny clean line” on the otherwise “dull wire” of Scout's costume?
The “shinny clean line” from Scout’s costume was from Mr. Ewell when he attacked her and proves that the contraption that she wore protected her from Mr. Ewell.
2. What explanation does Atticus give for Bob Ewell's attack?
Atticus says that, “He was out of his mind”. Bob Ewell was serious when he had made that threat to Atticus about watching his back, and out of rage was attempting to take it out on his children.
3. What does Heck Tate give as the reason for the attack?
Heck Tate says, “Wasn’t crazy-mean as hell. Low-down skunk with enough liquor in him to make him brave enough to kill children. He’d never have met you face to face.”
4. Do you think the sheriff's explanation or Atticus's is the more likely to be true?
I think that the Sheriff’s explanation made more sense than Atticus because we know from earlier on in the novel that Mr. Ewell was an alcoholic who when drunk was abusive. It makes sense that his confidence level was higher, but also that he was caring out his threat.
1. Who does Atticus think caused Bob Ewell's death?
Atticus believes that Jem caused Mr. Ewell’s death according to how the incident happened from Scout’s point of view. Scout reveals that Jem must have cotton up because someone dragged him backwards. Atticus goes on to tell how he wants his son to come out with this as elf defense and not hide the issue. Deep down Atticus knows that it was Boo Radley who saved his children and killed Bob. Atticus knows that Jem wouldn’t have had the strength to fight Mr. Ewell with one of his arms dislodged, and besides, Jem was by then unconscious.
2. Why does Heck Tate insist that Bob Ewell's death was self-inflicted? In what way is this partly true?
Heck Tate insists that Bob Ewell fell on his knife and killed himself. Heck says that Mr. Ewell stumbled over a root and his left hand swung it into his left rib cage and his body weight pushed it further into himself.
3. Is Heck Tate right to spare Boo then publicity of an inquest? Give reasons for your answer.
4. How does the writer handle the appearance, at the end of the story, of Boo Radley?
The writer explains for the reasons that Boo Radley looks like; pale, dirty. The overall message was that he looked like a normal person and smoke like one too. The author makes Scout realize that he isn’t a scary monster like she had though all of these years.
1. How do the events of the final chapters explain the first sentence in the whole novel?
In the first sentence in the novel it says, “When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow.”At the end of the novel the reader learns the events and the children’s childhood growing up, leading up to the last chapter when Mr. Ewell breaks Jem’s arm and dies.
2. Comment on the way the writer summarizes earlier events to show their significance.
3. How does Scout make sense of an earlier remark of Atticus's as she stands on the Radley porch?
Scout makes sense of what Atticus once told her that you never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them. Scout standing on the Radley porch was enough of walking in his shoes for her.
4. How much of a surprise is it for find what Boo Radley is really like? Has the story before this point prepared the reader for this discovery?
Scout is surprised to see Boo Radley not like the descriptions she heard Jem talk about; un-clean, ex. The descriptions of Boo Radley that the reader has learned about earlier in the novel prepares for Boo Radley’s appearance not to be like that. The reader knows the kids used their imaginations to come up with what Boo Radley looked and was liked.
5. At the end of the novel, Atticus reads to Scout. Comment on his choice of story. Does it have any connection with themes earlier in the novel and in its ending?
The story that Atticus chooses to read to Scout is called, “The Gray Ghost”. This story from what we hear about in the first chapter is that a person was chassed for punishment and accusations of something he didn’t do. This relates to the theme in the novel regarding Tom Robinson, and that you should never judge a person by their color without knowing them and the facts. Also the ending of The Grey Ghost relates to the identity of Arthur Radley being misjudged because of not knowing what they looked liked.
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