What would you do if someone spit on you, cursed at you, and threatened to kill you? In the novel To Kill a Mockingbird, in Chapter 22, Atticus Finch is faced with this decision. As he was leaving the post office, Bob Ewell approached him. Angry and upset that Atticus had publicly humiliated him, Mr. Ewell proceeded to spit on, curse at, and threaten to kill Atticus. Without batting an eyelash, Atticus pulled out his handkerchief and did not retaliate. When Ewell asked if Atticus was too proud to fight, Atticus responded by saying, “No, too old.” Miss. Stephanie Crawford tells this to Jem and Scout who initially seem indifferent. They don't believe that Atticus was brave by walking away from Bob Ewell, and they even start to get worried for him. Jem and Scout start to take little interest in everyday activities and they stop eating. Realizing how deeply frightened his children were, Atticus confronts Jem about, and in doing so, allows Jem to understand Bob Ewell's reasoning behind what he had done. It also allows Jem to see how Atticus really was brave by walking away from the situation. In the novel To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee uses the literary elements of characterization and conflict to establish the theme, Bravery is not always shown by physical strength.
One element that is used frequently throughout this passage is characterization. Characterization is the portrayal of a character. One example of characterization in this passage is when Miss. Stephanie said, “Atticus didn't bat and eye, just took out his handkerchief and wiped his face and stood there and let Mr. Ewell call him names wild horses could not bring her to repeat.” This quote helps to characterize Atticus as being brave, even though he did not fight back. By holding in his anger , it shows that he was mentally strong and had the fortitude to refrain from using violence when faced with an abusive man like Mr. Ewell. Another example...
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