To Kill a Mockingbird : Personal Growth

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Many things can influence a child’s life. Today a child may suffer from stress all the way to learning life lessons through a breakup. In “To Kill a Mockingbird”, two children, Scout and Jem had to deal with a less common stressor. They dealt with the trial and conviction of an innocent black man in their town and to make things worse, their own father Atticus was the appointed defense for Tom. Scout and Jem were six and ten at the beginning of the novel; throughout the next three years that it took place their maturity goes on to be influenced by many experiences and people. The two children learn valuable lessons from adults during events surrounding the trial such as empathy, courage, honestly, equality and justice. The main characters that were the cause to Scout and Jem’s growing up were their father Atticus, Boo Radley and a despised neighbor Mrs. Dubose. Jem turning into a teenager, tomboy Scout blossoming into a lady; certain causes allow the children to learn and grow noticeably throughout the novel.

Jem is Atticus’s first born son, he’s independent enough to question his fathers actions but trusts he will always “do the right thing”. He’s always there to look out for his little sister Scout who has her own idea’s of right and wrong. Scout settles her disagreements with her fists rather than words, meanwhile Jem has a very stereotypical masculine sense of courage. Their father Atticus is a huge part of their personal growth throughout the novel. He teaches Scout important things like social skills and basic facts about life; most importantly her tolerance of individual differences which starts when she can understand another persons view, as Atticus says to Scout, “learn to climb into another’s skin and walk around in it” (Atticus, p.30). He also managed to shift Jems view on courage, as an exampled through the shooting of the rabid dog. Jem had never witnessed his fathers bravery like that, and after he realizes courage is not just physical. His...
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