Growing up is a necessity in life. In Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird there are many major themes. One of them is “growing up”. This theme is brought out by Jem and Scout. Both of these characters grow in many different ways. Scout shows she’s growing up when she loses her innocence, and events in her life allow her to see the world for how it actually is. She also is acting mature; she takes difficult obstacles in her life with a confident approach. She is also changing mentally and emotionally which allows her to have strong feelings for different people. In contrast Jem is physically changing which shows he’s getting older. He also shows signs that he’s maturing by caring for his family and sticking up for them in different situations. His mentality is also changing so he starts to feel empathetic for people because he sees the world for how it actually is.
At first Jem is going through many physical changes which indicate he is growing up. Since he was growing he was hungrier, which meant he was eating more. Miss Maudie was quick to notice this, so she started making him his own big cakes. This shows that she has separated him from Scout. Also, while Jem was going through puberty Scout saw that “Jem was the one who was getting more like a girl every day…” (239). This shows that Jem is acting more sensitive and that she was able to see this. In addition Jem is even beginning to notice changes in his body: “Well [Scout] can’t you see it?...well its hair…under my arms too” (225). This is of importance because it shows he’s physically becoming more of a man.
Jem isn’t just physically changing he is also maturing emotionally. This is a huge factor in growing up because that is when one has fully developed in their body or mind. Jem’s maturity is easy to see when he explains to Scout why she should stop bugging their Aunt Alexandra. Jem feels that this will make it a whole lot easier on Atticus because he has a lot of stress already and “…Tom...
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