To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill A Mocking Bird deals with many primal and basic
lessons in human nature. The book exposes many issues that
affect most people throughout their lives. Scout, the main
character was one of the most affected by these lessons.
During the book she was exposed to many profound
experiences, which no doubt will leave a lasting impression.
In the three years that the book took place, she may have
learned the most important things she will learn over her
entire life. One person that affected Scouts life was Boo
Radley. He brought wonder, fear and then finally relief to her
heart. At first kids thought he was evil. There were rumours
that while he cut out the newspaper for his scrap book he
"drove the scissors into his parent\'s leg."(pg11) He had tried
to kill them. Even though this may have been just a rumor the
kids were terrified of the Radleys. They described him often
as a monster "six-and-a-half feet tall" with "bloodstained"
hands. He was said to eat "raw squirrels and any cats he
could catch".(pg12) During the rest of the book Scout and
companions tried to meet Arthur (Boo) and get over their
fear of him. They did not succeed. But he showed affection
for them by leaving them gifts in a tree. Finally at the end of
the book he proves he is a good person by saving Scout and
Jem\'s lives. In this instance Scout may have found that to
negatively prejudge someone is wrong. She also learned
compassion. Scout also learnt about the ugliness of life.
About death and pain. This lesson occurred while her
brother had to read to a sick and dieing old lady. This lady\'s
name was Mrs. Dubose. She had been a morphine addict
and had decided to go clean till her death. To die as a free
women, to die knowing she had won. Scout describes her
as a ugly lady and during their reading sessions she would
have some kind of spasm-fits. Her head moved side to side.
She would drool. "Her mouth seemed to have a private
existence of it\'s own." (pg.107) After many reading sessions
with her having a fit each time, she died one day. Probably
the most important person in Scout\'s life was the one who
had set the best examples for her. This was Atticus. He
taught Scout how to deal with people. One of his teachings
was to be the bigger person. When Bob Ewell spit in
Atticus\'s face and threatened his life, he did nothing and
walked away. All he had to say later was,"I wish Bob Ewell
wouldn\'t chew tobacco."(pg.217) Atticus reacts with his
brain not emotions. He encourages Scout to do the same.
Another trait that he teaches is respect. Respect for people
who are different. People such as Boo Radley. The kids had
been acting out a play which involved Boo\'s scissor incident.
They also tried to give a letter to him, so that he would come
out to meet them. Atticus found out about both incidents.
They were put in their place and told to, "stop tormenting
that man." He then told them that, "what Mr.Radley did was
his own business."(pg.49) Atticus also commanded respect
for black people. He once told Jem that if a white man
cheats a black man, "no matter who he is, how rich he is, or
how fine a family he comes from, that man is trash."(pg.220)
At the trial he also explained that there are bad and good
black men as there are good and bad white men.(pg.204)
Two more models that helped Scout out. The first was a
valuable example set by Atticus. He had been told to defend
Tom Robinson. The case was a lost cause because he was
beat before he began, and it would bring hardship to himself
and his family. He knew this, but did not give up. It was the
right thing to do. As he told his brother, "do you think I
could face my children otherwise"(pg.88) Scout heard this
conversation and understood it in later years. Again teaching
this gives her a valuable example; Stick to what you believe
in. A lesson in effort and commitment was also
demonstrated by Mrs. Dubose. After finding out that she
would soon die, she decided to kick the morphine. This was
a very hard thing for her or for that matter anyone to do.
"She was the bravest person I knew." said Atticus. He also
again repeated that courage is when, "you know you\'re
licked before you begin but you begin anyway".(pg.112)
This is in fact a mirror image example of