Top-Rated Free Essay

Misunderstood

Good Essays
The definition of a good father is as individual as the individuals involved themselves. A good father is able to support his children’s strengths, along with being able to help them overcome their weaknesses. He is able to do this without appearing to be a know-it-all. The ability to show by example how to live life, while not being afraid to make mistakes and not to be perfect all the time are also very important characteristic. Atticus was by that definition a very good father. Whenever Scout was mislead by anything, like the legend of Boo Radley or about how grown ups are, or why certain people feel prejudiced about certain people, Atticus was always right there to guide her. Atticus was also a good father because he knew right from wrong. He was different then most of the men in that town, as hard to find as a needle in a haystack. He saw people as people, not black or white. He defended Tom Robinson without caring that everyone in Maycomb was a calling him a “nigger lover” and many other racial slurs. All Atticus did was shrug them off. When Bob Ewell spit in Atticus’s face, Atticus still did not retaliate. Instead, he wiped the spit off of his face and kept walking minding his own business. This showed Scout and Jem that there was no reason to worry themselves with other peoples opinion’s. When Mrs. Dubose called Atticus a nigger lover to Jem, Jem got angry and went home and asked Atticus if he really was a nigger lover. Atticus said straight out with no thought, “I certainly am. I do my best to love everyone…I’m hard to put, sometimes-baby, its never an insult to be called what somebody thinks is a bad name. It just shows you how poor that person is , it doesn’t hurt you. So don’t let Mrs. Dubose get you down.” This qoatation shows exactly how Atticus in influencing Scout and Jem to be good people. He gave his, what may be called lessons on life, so fluently that it seemed less like a lecture then it really was. He tried his best to teach his children that some people can only feel good about themselves when they attempt to make someone else feel bad. Atticus taught many lessons to Scout and Jem one being the reality of prejudice and many others but how he did it was the key. He was not straight forward as in he did not make a point of telling them what was right and what was wrong or why certain people acted certain ways. His way of teching his children was to wait until Scout or Jem came to him instead of having him tell hem right there and then when he saw what they had been doing. He let his children decide for themselves wether or not to come to him about there problems. For instance he had seen the game that dill jem and scout had been playing the Boo Radley game he very well new what they were doing., He asked them what they were paying knowing the answer would be anything but the truth and kept along knowing that Jem or scout would soon come to him and ask him what was the deal with Boo.

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Better Essays

    To show that he wants his children to stand up for what’s right, he leads by example. After finding out that Atticus is going to defend Tom Robinson; a black man, a ruckus is caused in the neighbourhood. Almost everyone is against Atticus standing up for Tom Robinson and a lot of the white community calls him a “nigger-lover.” (83) When Scout questions her father about why he has to defend a black man when the whole county is against it, he says that it was his ethical duty to defend Tom Robinson. It was the right thing to do because Atticus knew that Tom Robinson was wrongly convicted and even though it was almost certain that he would lose the case, it was important to try. “…If I didn’t I couldn’t hold my head up in town (…) or represent this county in the legislature. I couldn’t even tell you or Jem not to do something…

    • 1493 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    As the father of Jem and Scout, Atticus is a very understanding man. He attempts to teach Jem and Scout as they progress through life and through different events, and is the pillar of support for both children. Atticus is a very wise person, who respects all people around him regardless of what they think of him. He understands that people have their own views and opinions, and while they may be different from his or what he thinks is right, they still deserve to be respected and treated equally. He understands the value of empathy, and how it can be used to understand a person and how the person acts. This can be seen when he attempts to teach Scout about this value, "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." p33. Atticus, as a father, teaches Jem and Scout about moral values, and to respect other people no matter the circumstances. Atticus can be continually seen throughout the book attempting to divert Scout from her violent ways, and to never react to another person's actions or words. He displays this quality later in the book when Bob Ewell spits on Atticus' face, yet he calmly walks away from him. These qualities about Atticus develop the reader into feeling respect and admiration for Atticus himself, and tends to focus the reader more upon the words and…

    • 983 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Atticus is a good father to both Jem and Scout. During the course of the book Atticus has been blamed to not have been a good father to his children when he allows them to do what most parents would not allow. Such as allowing Scout to wear breeches as it shows “[Scout] could not possibly hope to be a lady if I wore breeches; when I said I could do nothing in a dress…” (Lee 83). This shows that people inside the family and outside the family want Scout to act like a lady and do what lady are suppose to be doing, not running around in boy pants. As it said “[Scout] could not possibly hope to be a lady if I wore breeches…” (Lee 83), this shows that Atticus is very worry or care much of what she does. Though it may show that Atticus is a bad father…

    • 444 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    In the book, To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus Finch is portrayed as a respected, knowledgeable, and true person. I have a good deal of respect for Atticus Finch, mainly because of his outlook on parenting and basic respect for others. Atticus believes that you truly can't understand someone unless you step into their shoes. "You never really understand a person until you consider things from their point of view" (Lee 34). This quote shows that Atticus is a caring parent and wants his children to learn that every person is going through their own problems and you mostly don't know all of them. He wants them to know to be kind to others no matter how they act. Atticus wants his children to learn certain lessons through experiences rather than seeing or hearing things. “I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do” (Lee 116). Atticus has good parenting morals because he understood that Jem had to go read to Mrs. Dubose to keep her mind off the painkiller. He wanted Jem to be brave and do it, even if he didn’t want to, because then he would truly understand what bravery was. All in all, Atticus is a great father figure and a fantastic parenting model.…

    • 869 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    To Kill a Mockingbird

    • 984 Words
    • 4 Pages

    <br> One of the most important role models in Scout's life, is her father, Atticus. Atticus is a small town lawyer who deals with a very tough case involving a black man and his rights. Although Atticus is a single father, he manages to teach his children right from wrong. He makes it a common practice to live his life as he would like his children to live theirs, and therefore displays the characteristics of an honest, respectable, and kind man. Atticus demonstrates his feelings for example, by showing the highest respect for everyone in Maycomb, regardless of their color or class. His serious defense for Tom Robinson, a black man accused of raping a white woman, proves his high ideals. Throughout the trial process, Atticus shows Jem and Scout that a true person is standing up for what you believe in, and all human beings, despite their race, deserve respect. Atticus not only shows his non prejudice ways through defending Tom Robinson, but also through his everyday dealings with Calpurnia, the cook. He refuses to fire…

    • 984 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Atticus Finch Hero

    • 736 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Atticus always tries to instill bravery and a sense of right and wrong in his children. This was partly why he took up Tom Robinson’s case because even though he knew it was a losing battle, he fought vigorously in court for him because he believed it to be an honorable cause. According to him, “ This case, Tom Robinson’s case, is something that goes to the essence of a man’s conscience--Scout, I couldn't go to a church and worship god if I didn't try to help out that man….but before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself” (104, 105). This is him saying that if he didn’t accept that case and fight for Tom Robinson, he would feel like a hypocrite. In the world of Atticus Finch, he cannot just ignore his morals when they did not suite him. Atticus in Maycomb was known as “...the same in his house as he is on the public streets” (46). Atticus did not have one set of morals for business, and another for family. He did not have one set of morals towards blacks and another towards whites. What he did have was one universal “code of conduct” in which he treated everyone equally and did not stereotype or bias anybody based on their looks, but rather on the content of their character. This disagreed with…

    • 736 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Atticus has instilled in his children his strong sense of morality and justice. He is one of the few residents of Maycomb committed to racial equality. With his strongly held convictions, wisdom, and empathy, As a father Atticus is affectionate with his children, Jem and Scout, ready with a hug whenever he can and is available to spend time reading to them during the night. Although he allows his children the freedom to perform many risky tasks and get into dangerous situations, he is also a firm disciplinarian, always teaching his children to think of how their actions affect others and devising punishments to teach his children valuable lessons. He makes sure that they get a proper punishment for what they did, why they did it, and make them fix it if they can.…

    • 458 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Atticus is a father who clearly cares about his children. The loving relationship is demonstrated when he reads to them, teaches them life principles, and when they run to greet him as he comes home from work. He has always worked to provide for them, and Scout and Jem have absolute trust in their father. Atticus takes time out of his day to answer questions, calm fears, and just talk with them. When he sees his children misbehaving, he reprimands them but in a careful and calm manner. A father like Atticus is phenomenal example for fathers everywhere.…

    • 386 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Throughout the book To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus was a great father. This is so because…

    • 728 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Atticus was a well-educated, respected lawyer in the town of Maycomb. Atticus put his family relationship on the line for justice. Even though the people in the town were criticizing him. “He had announced the day before that Scout Finch’s daddy defended niggers” (page 85). She said everyone was using that word. Atticus told her that the use of that work was for common people, and everyone minus one was going to be using it. He had the courage to send his daughter back to school where he knew everyone else was using the word and she would be criticized by her peers but he stood for equality even at his daughters expense. Scout asked if you should not be defending him why are you doing it.…

    • 528 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Atticus did many terrific things in this novel as a father other than slight mistakes he might have made. When Atticus said “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.” --Atticus (pg. 30) that was really foreshadowing the story towards Tom Robinson and adds to teaching his kids equality. Also, the fact that he even stood up for Tom Robinson as a white man defending a black man is greatly teaching his kids to not care what anybody else thinks or says and just be your own person. That is a quality that many people and children are…

    • 621 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Atticus' selfless attitude throughout To Kill A Mockingbird was one of many traits that were important. Firstly, Atticus agreed to defending Tom Robinson in court despite the criticism he received from the rest of the community. Also, his decision to defend a black man could have, and did, put him and his family in danger. Atticus knew that it was his duty as a lawyer, and a human being, to defend Tom. He knew that if he did not defend Tom, he would not have been able to live with himself and Tom would not have any chance at winning the trial. Also, Atticus allowed Bob Ewell to spit in his face, and did so without retaliation. Atticus took that disgusting gesture from Bob because he knew what his family life was like. Atticus, knowing the rage that Bob was in, said, "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 houseful of children out there" (218). Making sure that the Ewell children were safe was a higher priority to Atticus than retaliating against Bob. Atticus did not want to go down to Bob's level by fighting him, which was Bob's intent. Lastly, Atticus loved his children and was affectionate towards them. Despite all of the stressful and time consuming activities that Atticus was involved in, he made time to ensure that his children, Jem and Scout, were safe and understood the situation that he was in. Atticus brought Aunt Alexandra to their house to ensure the kids were kept…

    • 997 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Why is Atticus a hero?

    • 451 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Atticus is an understanding father who always encourages his children to do the right thing. He is also an excellent role model for Jem and Scout. He explains the importance of trying to understand others by 'walking in their skin' to consider their point of view. He also teaches his children to have respect for others. For example, the time when Scout was upset because Miss Caroline told her she was too far ahead of the class in her reading, Atticus told her that she had to walk in Miss Caroline's skin and see her point of view.…

    • 451 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Atticus as a Role-Model

    • 515 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Scout is a curious, young, impressionable girl without a mother figure to look up to and needs Atticus more than anybody. When Atticus explains to his daughter Scout that he would be defending Tom Robinson, Scout asks her father “ Why are you defending a black man?”. Atticus replies with a direct answer; “For a number of reasons. The main one being is if I didn’t I couldn’t hold my head up in this town, I couldn’t represent this country in legislature, I couldn’t even tell you or Jem not to do something again.” (pg. 81). This shows Atticus to be a man with strong morals, and a great father to teach Scout important values at her impressionable age. Another example of this would be when Atticus makes Scout read to Ms. Dubose as a way of apologizing for damaging her flowers. This also teaches Scout true bravery, and the golden rule (treat everyone how you would like to be treated).…

    • 515 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Is Atticus a good father or not? In the novel To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Atticus is trying to be a good father as much as he can to Scout and Jem. He never brags about his abilities. Atticus Finch only wants to be a good father as well as a lawyer. He is loving and caring, tells his kids what is the difference between good and wrong, and teaches them about peoples rights.…

    • 1009 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays