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Growth and Character Development in to Kill a Mockingbird.

  • Date Submitted: 12/06/2012 10:25 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 64.5 
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To Kill a Mockingbird Formal Essay
“Lawyers, I suppose, were children once.” Harper Lee chose to echo these words of Charles Lamb in her bestselling novel, ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’. This statement is very applicable to this story, which is told from the perspective of 7-year-old Scout (Jean-Louise) Finch, whose father is a lawyer. An important lesson in the novel is growing in understanding. Scout, Jem and Atticus are just a few examples of some of the characters that grow and learn as individuals. These characters learn about courage, empathy, and prejudice. This story takes place in Southern America in the 1930s, a time when prejudice was a major issue, and courage to stand up and make a difference was something that people like Atticus Finch tried to teach their children. Harper Lee demonstrates and develops the theme of growing up throughout To Kill a Mockingbird.  
Courage is a quality that people can learn to develop that’s helps them grow as individuals. Since this story is told from Scout’s point of view, she learns to grow by gaining courage herself, as well as seeing the courage of those around her. Her father, Atticus, is a lawyer, appointed to defend Tom Robinson, a Negro who was charged for sexually assaulting a white girl. Atticus knows that Tom is innocent, and he has the courage to fight for Tom, despite the stigma he and his family will have to face. Since Atticus is defending a Negro in a society that is very much prejudice, his kids have to face the gossip and verbal assault and endure it in a mature, grown up way. In the beginning of the novel, Scout has anger problems, and she gets into fights at school if anyone says something that offends her. Since Atticus is aware of the judgement that Scout and Jem are going to face at school, he has a talk with Scout, and he teaches her that she needs to have the courage to back away and not fight. She agrees and stands by her agreement that she is “Far too old and too big for such childish things, and...

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