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Atticus FInch Character Analysis

By kellyyy15 Dec 04, 2013 1180 Words
Only Man Of His Kind
The main characters in Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird are Scout and Jem but their father Atticus finch is the character the reader should care about the most. Atticus is a great father in many ways, he is loyal, he teaches his children by example and he always does what is right. Because of his age, he has lived through many experiences that have taught him great life lessons that he teaches to his children to help them make the right decisions. The definition of loyalty is: a feeling or attitude of devoted attachment and affection. Jem and Scout are very loyal to their father, they defend him when necessary and they obey every command he gives them. Even after their mother died of a heart attack, Atticus did not give up on his responsibilities in life. He kept up with his job as a lawyer, he kept up with his bills, groceries, etc, he kept up with everything that was necessary as a single parent. One day Jem and Scout were home alone and wanted to build a snowman but there wasn't enough snow so they dug up some of the yard and molded one out of mud. When Atticus returned home, Jem thought he would be furious but instead, he was impressed with Jem’s creativity: “I didn’t know how you were going to do it, but from now on I’ll never worry about what’ll become of you, son, you’ll always have an idea” (67). Atticus also teaches Jem and Scout to not let what others affect them- “You just hold your head high and keep those fists down. No matter what anyone says to you, don’t let ‘em get your goat. Try fighting with your head for a change… it’s a good one, even if it does resist learning” (76). He is teaches his children that there’s always someone that will be judging you and that you have to keep your head held high and to not stoop down to their level. Walk away and be the bigger person. No matter what obstacles appeared in his life, he always found ways to overcome them and do what was best for his children. Life lessons are probably the most important things that Atticus teaches his children. He teaches them that they are always good enough no matter what anyone tells them. When Atticus’ sister otherwise known as Aunt Alexandra comes into town, she tries to change scout into less of a tomboy and more of a lady: “He said there were already enough sunbeams in the family and to go about my business, he didn’t mind me much the way I was”(86). Atticus says that Scout is just fine the way she is and he doesn't want what Aunt Alexandra says to affect the way Scout feels about herself. He also teaches them to always keep your head up and to not let what others say affect you. Mrs. Dubose is a mean woman that doesn't agree with some of Atticus’ choices and she is always rude and judgemental to Atticus, Jem and Scout but everyday Atticus decides to be the bigger person: “When the three of us came to the house, Atticus would sweep off his hat, wave gallantly to her and say, ‘Good evening, Mrs. Dubose! You look like a picture this evening.’ I never heard Atticus say like a picture of what. He would tell her the courthouse news, and would say he hoped with all his heart she’d have a good day tomorrow. He would return his hat to his head, swing me to his shoulders in her very presence, and we would go home in the twilight. It was times like these when I thought my father, who hated guns and had never been to any wars, was the bravest man who ever lived”(95). This teaches Jem and Scout that you always have to be the bigger person in the situation and it will always make you look better. The most valuable characteristic that applies to Atticus Finch is that he always does what is right. Atticus believes that you must take a step in someone else’s shoes before you judge them- “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view; until you climb into his skin and walk around in it (30).” Everyone has their own personal issues in their life, and no one has the right to judge them based on what’s on the outside. Atticus believes that is the right thing to do in every situation. Another thing that Atticus believes is the right thing to do is to never hit his children: “Atticus ain’t ever whipped me since I can remember and I wanta keep it that way (90).” Around the time period that To Kill a Mockingbird was written, it was very common for parents to hit their children when they misbehaved. Atticus believed that that was an unfair, useless punishment and used different discipline methods instead. The main reason that Atticus Finch is considered a person that always does what is right no matter what is the fact that he stood up for Tom Robinson, a black man that was accused of raping a white female: “And Tom Robinson now sits before you having taken the oath with the only good hand he possesses... his RIGHT. I have nothing but pity in my heart for the chief witness for the State. She is the victim of cruel poverty and ignorance. But my pity does not extend so far as to her putting a man's life at stake, which she has done in an effort to get rid of her own guilt”(204). No matter what the situation is, Atticus always does what is right and stands up for others and puts other people’s needs in front of his own. Because Atticus is such an amazing person in Maycomb, he is well known and is respected by many. Although, there are some people that have no respect such as Mayella Ewell’s husband Bob Ewell: "Jem see if you can stand in Bob Ewell's shoes a minute. I destroyed his last shred of credibility at that trial, if he had any to begin with. The man had to have some kind of comeback, his kind always does. So if spitting in my face and threatening me saved Mayella Ewell one extra beating, that's something I'll gladly take. He had to take it out on somebody and I'd rather it be me than that household full of children out there"(231). Bob is upset with Atticus because he stood up for Tom Robinson, the man that supposedly raped his wife. Throughout the whole book, Atticus always respects people that respect him and he always puts their needs ahead of his as well as not following the people of Maycomb by respecting negros and treating them all equally, making Atticus Finch an overall amazing character in To Kill a Mockingbird.

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