The Destruction Of Jem

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The Destruction of Jem Are children able to cope with the darker secrets of humankind? This question is put to the test in To Kill a Mockingbird, a novel by Harper Lee. In the book, Jem is the brother of narrator Scout Finch, four years older than she. Jem represents the ideals of bravery and justice in Scout’s life, and the manner in which his definitions of humanity change over the course of the story is vital to her development as a person. Along the course of the novel, Jem grows from a precocious young boy who drags his unwilling sister along as a co-conspirator to his nefarious schemes into a maturing young man who helps Scout better understand the problems and events that rage through their childhoods. Jem and Scout both learn to look at the good in human nature, as well as the bad, but it is Jem, not Scout, who faces the role of precursor to his more fragile-bodied and -minded younger sister, with only his father as anchor. In comparison to Scout’s still very childish perspective, Jem’s more mature understanding of the world, along with his pervading sense of justice, make themselves evident from as early as the book’s first chapter. Despite his apparent maturity, however, Jem still retains the innocence of a child, who views the world through eyes that have had little experience beyond the pages of his beloved sports magazines and adventure novels. Old enough to understand the ways of the world, he is yet unprepared to face the evils and prejudice that rove through the quiet Summer air. Growing up shines a new light on the world, one which reveals the evils which destroy our childhood innocence, but Jem is like a starling pushed out of the nest at birth, twisting and tumbling and clawing for life as the injustices of his small hometown threaten to overtake him. We all experience the loss of innocence in our lives when we endure, face or witness evil. And
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