“Calpurnia was something else again. She was all angles and bones; she was nearsighted; she squinted; her hand was wide as a bed slat and twice as hard.” (Pg 6) This is how Jean Louise “Scout” Finch describes Calpurnia, a black woman who serves as the Finch family cook and maid in Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Although Calpurnia is employed by a high social class family she is still considered to be at the bottom of that social hierarchy because of her African-American descent. The Finches believe Calpurnia to be a valuable part of their family because she is a very hard working individual, she’s very motherly to the Finch children and she is an educated and intellectual black woman.
Firstly, Calpurnia is a hard worker, as she aids the Finches with their daily needs and requirements, like cooking and cleaning. She is their maid and chef, also. When Scout becomes angry with Calpurnia, her father, Atticus says to her, “We couldn’t operate a single day without Cal.” (Pg 25) This proves that Calpurnia works hard for these people and they need her. Calpurnia has also decided to find work with the Finches instead of living like other coloured people do. In a way, she is lucky to be working with Mr. Atticus Finch and his family who are very respectful towards black people. There are other coloured people in Maycomb County who slave away for white people, such as Tom Robinson. There is a considerable difference between Tom and Calpurnia. She has never been accused of doing something wrong, and some neighbours have branded Tom as a rapist. At one time, Aunt Alexandra comes to live with Atticus and his children. When she threatens to remove Calpurnia from the household, Atticus replies, “Alexandra, Calpurnia’s not leaving this house until she wants to. You may think otherwise, but I couldn’t have got along without her all these years.” (Pg 137) This shows that Calpurnia is a respected part of the family, and as so, Atticus makes the point that...
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