To Kill a Mockingbird Essay

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To Kill a Mockingbird is a novel written by Harper Lee. It tells the story of a young girl named Scout and of her childhood growing up in a small southern town in the 1930`s. Throughout the story, Scout learns many life lessons which contribute to her maturing, due to the influence of Atticus, Mrs. Dubose, and Boo Radley. Atticus teaches Scout not to be provoked by other people, and to fight with her head instead of her fists. He tells her: “‘No matter what anybody says to you, don’t you let’ em get your goat. Try fighting with your head for a change…’” (Lee 101). Later, when Cecil Jacobs mocks Atticus for defending blacks in court, a fiery Scout decides to back down instead of fighting him. The author writes, “I drew a bead on him, remembered what Atticus had said, then dropped my fists and walked away… Somehow, if I fought Cecil I would let Atticus down.” (Lee 102). This quote illustrates Scout being able to control herself and walk away when somebody is provoking her. This contrasts with the hot-tempered Scout that used to get in fights often and rubbed Walter Cunningham`s nose in the dirt for getting her in trouble. This quote shows that Scout considers what Atticus tells her to do, and that his influence has made her able to control her temper and be more mature. Mrs. Dubose demonstrates true courage to Scout when Atticus makes Jem and Scout go read to her. Atticus says “‘I wanted you to see something about her- 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 your licked before you begin and you see it through no matter what. We rarely win, but sometimes we do. Mrs. Dubose won, all ninety-eight pounds of her. According to her views, she died beholden to nothing and nobody. She was the bravest person I ever knew. ’” (Lee 149). When Mrs. Dubose dies, Scout learns that Mrs.

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