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Courage in to Kill a Mockingbird - Essay 2

  • Date Submitted: 09/26/2011 07:09 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 60.8 
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Courage in To Kill a Mockingbird
In this world, physical courage often seems to overshadow other kinds of courage. In To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee uses the main characters to portray her message about courage. Atticus Finch, a lawyer, is one of the most distinguished men in Maycomb. His two children, Jem and Scout, learn to perceive courage in a more mature and appropriate way as they grow out of the idyllic innocence of childhood. Through her characters, Harper Lee demonstrates that courage is not always necessarily shown physically, but morally as well.
To Atticus, moral courage is more admirable than physical courage. With the neighborhood panicking, Atticus calmly takes the rifle from Mr. Tate to face a dangerous rabid dog on the street. Even though his children marvel at his courageous act, Atticus is uninterested in using this event to educate his children about courage. On the other hand, Atticus explains to Jem why he admires Mrs. Dubose despite her racism, stating   “I wanted you to see to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand… According to her[Mrs. Dubose’s] views, she died beholden to nothing and nobody. She was the bravest person I ever knew” (Lee 149).   Atticus believes that Mrs. Dubose’s determination and courage obviously overpower his hero-like act. In addition, he admires Mrs. Dubose for confronting her addiction with everything her fragile body and strong mind can offer despite the fact that only few morphine addicts manage to purge themselves of the drug. However, even though she knows her death is a few months away, Mrs. Dubose keeps fighting for what she believes in and overcomes her addiction. Mrs. Dubose most likely reminds Atticus of himself in defending Tom Robinson, a black man, even though he knows that the community is against his decision. Atticus knows that it is inevitable Tom will be convicted regardless of his innocence due to racism that thrives in Maycomb and in...

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