Jem held out a filthy piece of paper. Atticus took it and tried to read it. “Why do you want Mr. Radley to come out?” Dill said, “We thought he might enjoy us…”

Tonight you should read chapters 4-7 of To Kill a Mockingbird.

  • Choose a passage from tonight’s reading, which you would like to analyze in class.  Explain why you think it may be significant.
  • Make sure that you read all or some of your classmates posts and respond to at least one other comment in this thread.
  • Also, consider and make note of questions you may want to discuss on Monday.
  • Remember, a good discussion question does not have a single answer.  Good questions lead to interesting conversation.
Mockingbird blog #2

45 thoughts on “Jem held out a filthy piece of paper. Atticus took it and tried to read it. “Why do you want Mr. Radley to come out?” Dill said, “We thought he might enjoy us…”

  1. Tonight, we were supposed to read chapters 4 to 7. These couple chapters dive deeper into the Radley’s mysterious ways, and Jem, Scout, and Dill try to make Boo Radley come out. The most interesting part of these chapters, to me, is when the pants that Jem shook off get sewed back together when Jem goes back for them. Jem tore them off when the three were in the Radley’s back yard, trying to get a view of Boo Radley. Mr. Radley, suddenly, think a n—- is in his yard, and shoots a couple shots shots in the air. “Mr. Radley shot a negro in his color patch…anybody sees a white n—– around, that’s him”. Of course, we know that the white black is, in reality, is Jem. He lost his pants in the commotion. When Atticus sends Jem to get his pants, Jem finds them sewed up, and becomes overcome by shock and fright. He tells Scout in school, after he is speechless for a couple of days. “ There’s something I didn’t tell you…they’d been folded across the fence…sewed up”. That was the reason Jem was so silent. Perhaps more interesting, however, is that they start to receive little gifts, such as gum, in the tree knot in the days following the incident. One of the gifts was even a miniature doll version of Jem and Scout. I infer that all of this has to do with the Radleys, since Mr. Radley was the one who cemented the knot up. He said that the tree was dying, but Atticus said that the tree was good as new. Why would Mr. Radley, of all people, cement the knot up? Does he know who is putting the gifts in there?

    • Jacky I think your confused. Jen told Atticus he lost husband pants playing a game with Dill. Jen sneaks of in the middle of the night to get them. Other than that great job

    • Weren’t they receiving the gifts BEFORE Jem lost his pants? Then Mr. Radley cemented the whole because they left a thank-you note for the mysterious gift giver? But I liked that you associated the sewn pants and Jem being quiet, I hadn’t thought of that.

  2. I would like to exam the part when comes in and it looks like he was crying. Jem was looking at the tree that he and Scout had been getting things in. Mr. Radley put cement in it. Earlier in the book it seems Jem is hiding something from Scout. It’s like he knows who has been putting the gifts in the tree and has somehow now lost a friend. This shows us the softer side of Jem. Maybe he somehow felt that he was attached to the hole in the tree. Maybe this is foreshadowing to a different event or will maybe be symbolic.

  3. As we all know, the characters in our story are very stereotypical between races. People use the term “nigger” and “Negro” in the story mostly not to identify black people, but use it as a term for someone you dislike. While the term is used many times so far in the book, there was only one time where they meant people that are black. While it will most likely be used more often later in the book, these following chapters are showing a different stereotype: the gap between boys and girls. Many times in the book have females been shown as a bad gender label to be. ““Thank you ma’am. Thing is, foot-washers think women
    are a sin by definition. They take the Bible literally, you know.”(p. 59) The foot-washers think that women are not meant to be in God’s grace, and that it is only a place for men. Jem also acts as a girl is a bad thing. He says that girls just imagine things, and that is why people dislike them. In many ways, he tries to keep Scout from acting like a girl, or just excludes her from his and Dill’s conversation from the fact that she is and always will be a girl. “I beat him up twice but it did no good, he only grew closer to Jem. They spent days together in the treehouse plotting and planning, calling me only when they needed a third party. But I kept aloof from their more foolhardy schemes for a
    while, and on pain of being called a girl, I spent most of the remaining twilights that summer sitting with Miss Maudie Atkinson on her front porch.”(p. 55) As a result, Scout doesn’t like being and being called a girl. There are many times in these Chapters when women were neglected or disrespected. There was some hints when Dill “claimed” Scout as his property but neglected her anyways, and when hey reenacted that Mrs. Radley was beautiful until she lost everything by marrying Mr. Radley. The discrimination against females in this chapters have been shown much more than the racism against black people.

    • Nice job, Abigail. I agree with you on how the society in this novel discriminates certain people. Black people are disliked and having the traits of a woman is looked down upon.

    • Keep in mind though, that this novel takes place in the mid 1900’s 1933-1935, during the great depression (I looked it up, and accidentally read ahead). So it was common for people to act this way towards blacks. Also we haven’t truly heard of anything bad or someone saying something very distastefulness towards any blacks.

  4. “What tree, son?” “The one on the corner of the Radley lot comin‘ from school.” “Yes?” “Is that tree dyin‘?” “Why no, son, I don’t think so. Look at the leaves, they’re all green and full, no brown patches anywhere — ” (page 84)
    Jem and Scout everyday would take stuff that was left in a knot-hole in a tree. However, Mr. Radley filled it with cement, and said that the tree was dying and it needed it. By its looks, the tree is healthy and is not dying. The leaves are green and healthy. Then why would he fill it up? Jem and Scout are obviously very upset that the knot-hole got filled up. Finding the treasures that was found in the knot-hole was a game they played, and allowed them to be adventurous. Going to the knot-hole was something they always looked forward to. They decided to write a thank you note, and placed it in the knot-hole. Coincidently, the day after, the knot-hole gets filled up. It is very strange that once they sent a thank you note, Mr. Radley fill the knot-hole up, and that they find little figurines of themselves in the knot-hole. Is Mr. Radley the mysterious person that keeps putting stuff in the knot-hole? Why did he fill it up?

  5. After reading chapters 4-7, I’ve noticed a variety of events that may be significant in the future. One of these events that I’d like to discuss is how an anonymous person keeps putting random items in the tree’s knot-hole. Strangely enough, that person realized that their things were being taken, but still chose to use it. Even more peculiar, once Scout and Jem chose to reveal their identities of taking the objects, the knot-hole is blocked with cement immediately. In addition, when Jem asks Mr. Nathan Radley if he was the one who did it, he says he did because the tree was dying and you’re supposed to do it when they’re sick. However, upon questioning Atticus about the health of the tree, he states that it was completely fine. This leads me to believe that Mr. Radley was the one placing things in the knot-hole, and he had not intended to be giving them to the Finches. Why would Mr. Radley place objects in the hole at all? Why doesn’t he wish for Scout and Jem to take them? This brings up a bigger mystery surrounding the Radley family. Jem, Scout, and Dill constantly talk of the Radley place. Atticus does not want them to talk or go near them. Moreover, the whole town fears them. What does all of this mean? All of these incidents again lead me to believe that the Radleys will be significant in the story.

  6. In chapters 4-7 of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, many new events are unveiled as more information is given. First and foremost, Scout finds gum and a knot-hole in the Radley’s oak trees. Jem immediately orders Scout to dispose of the gum, and later on, we find out that the knot-hole plays a larger role than anticipated. I have noticed that Jem, Dill, and Scout are so obsessed with the Radleys. For instance, they even had fun acting out the Radley family, and so desperately wanted to interact with them. Also, when talking to Miss Maudie, her main question involve Arthur Radley. Next, involving the knot-hole mysterious, and interesting things occur in regard to that. Upon walking along the tree containing the knot-hole, Jem and Scout notice different good placed inside. Twine is found followed by soap figures of Jem and Scout, spelling bee medal, and an old pocket watch. After seeing these strange items being placed in the knot-hole, Jem and Scout decide to write a note acknowledging themselves to the anonymous person. Strangely, Jem and Scout find out the Mr. Nathan Radley had cemented this knot-hole. He claimed that the tree was dying, but Atticus believed the tree was perfectly healthy. This is a very strange, and peculiar action by Mr. Radley. Had he been the person placing the item inside? Did he read the note? Was he lying about the tree dying? I wonder what I will learn about the Radley’s in the upcoming chapters because they seem like very significant aspects of this story.

    • Great response! It is interesting how the knot hole plays a large role in the story. Good questions, and I hope that they will be answered in the upcoming chapters.

  7. From reading chapters 4-7, I’ve had multiple thoughts, questions and theories. Since Scout is in second grade now, Scout and Jem leave school and walk home at the same time. They start receiving little gifts in the tree that they found the previous year. They finally write a letter to the Mister/Ms./Mrs, thanking them for all the gifts. The next day, Jem and Scout are devasted because the tree is filled with cement. Soon, they realize that Mr. Radley was the one who filled the tree. Also, we realize that Boo/Arthur is still alive. Maybe Boo was the one who filled the tree with the different mini gifts. Maybe Boo was the one who sewed Jems pants back together messily. Mr. Radley may or may not have filled it with cement because he figured out that Boo was communicating with Jem and Scout. And he did not want anyone to find or talk or even see Boo. Mr. Radley also said that he filled the tree with cement because the tree was dying and old whereas Atticus said the tree was very healthy. This was just a theory.

  8. In the past few chapters, Jem and Scout were getting gifts from a mysterious person. The person was so mysterious that Jem and Scout didn’t even know who it was, and never saw the person. But I think that Jem had a feeling that he knew who it was. I personally thought that it was Mr. Radley, but then he plugged the hole in the tree where the gifts were being put with cement after they wrote a thank you letter, so that lead me to believe that it wasn’t Mr. Radley, but maybe it was. I think that Jem either knew who it was, or thought he knew who it was for two reasons. One day, Scout commented that Jem was acting weird, like he wanted to tell her something then decided not to. He had been doing it all afternoon after they got there gift from the truck. And next, possibly not hinting that he knew who it was but hinting at something nonetheless. After Mr. Radley cemented the hole in the tree and Jem and Scout asked him why, Mr. Radley said that the tree was sick and dieing, and to stop it from getting sicker he had to put cement in it. But them, when Jem asked their father if he thought the tree was sick his father said that no, the tree looked fine, but told Jem that Mr. Radley probably knew his own trees better than anyone else. Jem then cried about it. Jem obviously felt like he had lost something that day. This helps us understand Jem better, but also makes Jem a bit more confusing. So far we had only seen his older brother, stubborn, playful, and a bit mean side. Not really mean, but rather like he knows better than Scout. And he probably does because he is four years older. But this shows us a deeper side to Jem, that he cried when he lost some connection to someone or something, but as far as we know, he doesn’t even know who the connection was with.

    This is a very good book, which is why I had accidentally read ahead. I won’t spoil anything, but now I want to read more. Very good book.

    • Great Job! I love how you show a lot of interest towards this book and how you explained your own thought process. Keep up the great work!

  9. After reading chapters 4-7 in To Kill a Mockingbird, I noticed there were many different mysterious things that happened and might be relevant to the future.

    “You’ve never told me anything about that night,” I said. Jem waved my words away as if fanning gnats, fie was silent for a while, then he said, “When I went back for my breeches — they were all in a tangle when I was gettin‘ out of ’em, I couldn’t get ‘em loose. When I went back — ” Jem took a deep breath. “When I went back, they were folded across the fence. . . like they were expectin’ me.” “Across — ” “And something else — ” Jem’s voice was flat. “Show you when we get home. they’d been sewed up. Not like a lady sewed ‘em, like somethin’ I’d try to do.

    After the daring escapade to look into the Radley’s house, Jem leaves his pants behind because they were tangled. When he returned someone inexperienced sewed his pants back together and folded them for him. Jem is partially worried because of this; he believed that no one would no of his returning to get the pants. A key part about the pants is that someone inexpertly sewed back together. In this time period ladies were experts at sewing and someone married would probably give it to his wife. That and the fact that he lost the pants on the Radley’s property makes us believe that the infamous Arthur Radley was the person who sewed his pants. This leads us to some questions. Was it actually Arthur Ridley who fixed Jen’s pants? Furthermore, if he did then why?

  10. In chapters 4-7 of To Kill a Mockingbird, I found the parts where Miss Maudie and Scout were talking to be very interesting. They seem to have a very good relationship. When Jem and Dill didn’t want to play with Scout, she would go to Miss Maudie and they would talk. I find that Scout and Jem are getting kind of less familiar with one another. Jem and Dill won’t include her in any of their games or plans, and only let her in when she will benefit them in any way, for example, by looking out for people while Jem sneaks notes to Boo Radley. This might impact their relationship later on in the book. Scout’s relationship with Maudie will probably become stronger throughout the novel, though. “…we seldom spoke to her, so careful were we to preserve the delicate balance of our relationship, but Jem and Dill drove me closer to her with their behavior…She had never told on us, had never played cat-and-mouse with us, she was not at all interested in our private lives. She was our friend… ‘That ain’t right, Miss Maudie. You’re the best lady I know.’”(56-59) Scout and Miss Maudie might become really good friends in the future, and Scout and Jem could become farther apart.

  11. “I was not so sure, but Jem told me I was being a girl, that girls always imagined
    things, that’s why other people hated them so, and if I started behaving like one I
    could just go off and find some to play with”
    In the 1900’s segregation took a huge part in the everyday society from segregating those from different color of skin to sexuality. Throughout the book, To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, many different types of segregation is displayed, but the one that stood out the most to me, was that of women being segregated. As the main character, Jean Louise otherwise known as Scout, was told that due to her cowardly action, she is acting like a girl even though she is one. One may wonder why she has to be classified as a girl or a boy and why she can’t just be herself. In the quote above, “that’s why other people hated them so”, was mentioned. This part in the text took me by shock, if men hated women, why would they marry them and who would help support the family? Following that quote, Jem had told her that if she acted like a girl, she would have to hang out with girls. The question as to why a girl can’t act like herself and still hang out with boys was a very good question. It is so stereotypical of that boys have a certain way of acting in which only those who think the same can hang out with them.

  12. There are many events that happen in Chapters 4-7, and most of these events reveal more about the personalities of certain characters. One of these characters is Jem, who seems to grow closer to Dill, and farther away from Scout. He states that Scout is becoming more of a girl everyday, and seems to look down of Scout for her fear of getting in trouble. An example of this is when Jem and Dill are constantly leaving Scout out of their plans for the day. Whenever Jem and Dill are in a deep conversation and Scout tries to approach them, they tell her to go away. The group of 3 people also seem to grow extremely invested with the Radley family. They create a whole game scenario around the Radleys, and also are able to find a collection of gifts near the Radley household. Jem is especially into the family, as he is very excited to go and get his gift everyday walking past the house. But, as soon as the hole where the gifts were located was cemented, Jem is devastated.

  13. Chapters 4 -7 portray many essential parts of the novel. However, one major theme that Lee shows the reader is to never judge a book by its cover. This theme is especially true when Scout finds the first gift near the Radley House:

    “Two live oaks stood at the end of the Radley lot; their roots reached into the side-road and made it bumpy. Something about one of the trees attracted my attention. Tin-foil was sticking out of a knot-hole just above my eye level, winking at me in the afternoon sun. I stood on my tiptoe, hastily looked around once more, reached into the hole, and withdrew two pieces of chewing gum minus their outer wrappers.” (p.44).

    I am pretty sure that Boo Radley placed the gum there because it was near the Radley Place. It is just a prediction. While Scout was going home, she spotted the gum in the tree. In fact, if it was Boo Radley, it might have been a sign of friendship. The whole occurrence was mysterious because the reader does not know who put the gum there, why they might have done it, how they acquired the gum, and where the person is now. All the reader can do is make predictions. This novel is really mysterious. I know this is only the beginning of the novel but how does any of this connect to killing a Mockingbird? What is the point of these chapters?

    • Great response, Aniket! I like how you incorporated the theme of “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover” into your analysis. You are right about this whole book being mysterious, and it makes me wonder how the plot is developing. Good job, anyway.

  14. “Miss Maudie’s eyes narrowed. “You know that story as well as I do.” “I never heard why, though. Nobody ever told me why.” Miss Maudie settled her bridgework. “You know old Mr. Radley was a footwashing Baptist-”… “Foot-washers believe anything that’s pleasure is a sin. Did you know some of ‘em came out of the woods one Saturday and passed by this place and told me me and my flowers were going to hell?” (Pg. 61)
    As I read, I found that this may very well be the reason that Arthur stays inside the house, as religion is often passed from father to son. This would explain why Arthur never comes out of the house, because that was how his religion dictated. This would also go to show that Arthur is most likely not the bloodthirsty creature that the children see him as but rather a kind and even a helpful person. This is later supported when Jem leaves his pants in the radley’s fence, but comes back to them folded and sewn. This implies that it was arthur who noticed Jem’s pants and decided to be helpful by sewing and folding his pants.

  15. One passage that stood out to me in tonights reading was when Jem and Scout first found a gift for them in the tree outside the Radley household. When Scout first finds something in the Radley tree, it is on the last day of school, where she discovers two pieces of unwrapped gum and chews them before talking to Jem. She states, “Two live oaks stood at the edge of the Radley lot; their roots reached out into the side-road and made it bumpy. Something about one of the trees attracted my attention,” (page 44). To me, this passage seems very important. While the book so far has focused on Scout and Jem and their exploits, with their summertime friend Dill coming up occasionally, the setting of the Radley house and the character of Boo Radley comes up frequently and is quite cryptic. However, it now seems that Scout and Jem feel drawn/connected to this tree and therefore the Radley residence in a positive way. There is not much known about Boo yet it is known that he stays locked up in his house and has not come out in a very long time. By putting this scene with the tree in, I believe Harper Lee, the author, is leading the reader to see a different side of Boo Radley from that of previous chapters. If Boo is the one leaving the little trinkets for Scout and Jem, which seems likely, then I suspect that he will come to have a major role as the novel progresses. I look forward to reading and discovering if a relationship is forged between Scout, Jem and Boo Radley.

    • Great analysis!!! I love the way you said that this passage was very important to you!!! The passage you picked was great!!! Keep it up!!

    • Nice blog! I realy like how you said that Jem and Scout are drawn to Radley House in a positive way. And if it was Arthur who put all those treasures up there, then maybe Mr. Nathan put cement in the tree because he doesn’t want people going near his house? Perhaps he just doesn’t like Arthur? We’ll just have to wait and see….

  16. This weekends reading of “To Kill A Mockingbird.” Were chapters four through seven. One passage that was very interesting to me was when Jem went back to get his pants where he left them when he was running from the Radley’s backyard, and how he finds his pair all fixed and stitched, and folded nearly on the fence. I think this shows that maybe Boo Radley isn’t such a crazy person after all. Maybe Boo just wants to be friends with Jem, Dill, and Scout, which also could be tied to why he might leave things in the knot hole of a tree. Could this mean that Jem and Scout actually have a chance of being friends with Boo? This is a very important scene, because maybe Boo isn’t all that bad, and what Jem and Scout’s neighbours are only talking about his bad side, but Boo may be friendly. If it was Boo who left the things in the knot hole, that would make sense. Overall, this passage would be a good one to discuss, because it is important for the story plot.

    • This was a really great response Mia, you did a wonderful job! I agree with you about how interesting the matter of Jem’s pants being fixed was. I think that is important and should definitely be talked about but I don’t think that he just wanted to be friends with them. I think that maybe he wanted to scare them or to make them confused about the situation as a whole. Great job Mia, keep up the good work!

  17. Over this weekend we read chapters 4-7 of Haper Lee’s “To Kill A Mockingbird”. Within these chapters, a lot of very interesting things happen and many events occurred. One event that stood out, is when Scout mentions that Dill had somehow proposed to her. I thought this was a very specific detail that was added and may be very important at some point in the future of the book. Dill’s want to marry Scout, could easily be a joke and something cute that little kids talk about because they don’t really understand marriage but there is probably a reason it was added to the plot. It will be really captivating to see how this aspect of the story changes the relationship of Dill and Scout. We can already see a change when Dill is about to leave but remembers that he should run back and kiss Scout and does. Their so-called engagement is most likely something of little importance but if it does end up being necessary to the plot line and novel it will be fun to red how it changes the relationships of everyone.

  18. Ona part of this weekend’s reading of To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, was when Scout first finds the two sticks of gum in the trees near Radley House. She states, “Two live oaks stood at the edge of the Radley lot; their roots reached out into the side-road and made it bumpy. Something about one of the trees attracted my attention. Some tinfoil was sticking in a knot-hole just above my eye level, winking at me in the afternoon sun. I stood on tiptoe, hastily looked around once more, reached into the hole, and withdrew two pieces of chewing gum minus their outer wrappers,” (p. 44). The interesting part comes later, when Jem sees her eating the two sticks of gum. Upon learning that they came from the trees at Radley House, he says that “ ‘Spit it out right now!’ I spat it out. The tang was fading, anyway. ‘I’ve been chewin’ it all afternoon and I ain’t dead yet, not even sick.’ Jem stamped his foot. “Don’t you know you’re not supposed to even touch the trees over there? You’ll get killed if you do!’ ‘You touched the house once!’ ‘That was different! You go gargle—right now, you hear me?’ ” (p. 45). Radley House was believed to be a terrible place, but some of the events in this weekend’s reading do not support that theory. Jem and Scout ended up finding tons of treasures in that tree. And when Jem lost his pants at Radley House, they were folded and stitched for him, laid over the fence so Jem could easily take them back. It kind of reminds me of … Appearance vs. Reality? Similarly, Mr. Nathan, based on the rumors, always seemed like the victim, since Arthur had supposedly stabbed him with a pair of scissors. However, he filled the tree with cement, keeping Jem and Scout from ever getting any treasures from there again. And it was almost certainly intentional, considering the fact that it happened right after Jem put the thank-you letter in the tree. Maybe Mr. Nathan isn’t so innocent after all.

  19. This weekend we were told to read chapters 4-7. In these chapters we learn more about the time period itself, as well as get shocked by some surprising events. Although all the passages were interesting, I found one in particular most interesting.

    What Mr. Radley did was his own business. If he wanted to come out, he would.
    If he wanted to stay inside his own house he had the right to stay inside free from
    the attentions of inquisitive children, which was a mild term for the likes of us.
    How would we like it if Atticus barged in on us without knocking, when we were
    in our rooms at night? We were, in effect, doing the same thing to Mr. Radley.
    What Mr. Radley did might seem peculiar to us, but it did not seem peculiar to
    him. Furthermore, had it never occurred to us that the civil way to communicate
    with another being was by the front door instead of a side window? Lastly, we
    were to stay away from that house until we were invited there, we were not to
    play an asinine game he had seen us playing or make fun of anybody on this street
    or in this town-

    This passage gives us some insight to how Atticus parents the children, as well as how he feels about Boo Radley. My question is why is he so caught up on them playing a game. He says himself that he stays inside because he wants to, so why is he worried about making him feel bad? In it’s entirety Boo Radley interests me and this passage just sums up what is going on with him, even though it is still unanswered.

  20. Chapter four through seven of To Kill A Mockingbird were quite eventful and the story is starting to pick up pace. An event that really interested me was when Jem goes back to retrieve his pants. When he abandoned them they were all tangled up but when he gets them, they’re folded and sewn back together. Following this Scout and Jem begin to receive very sweet gifts like chains and gum. I believe this is Boo Radley’s peace offering. He’s trying to let the kids know he’s not some cat eating monster to be feared. I think he’s lonely and would like compainiship. I hope this is explained later, and also the part at the end of chapter 7 when Jem cries after the knot hole is closed. I feel that’s significant but I’m not sure in what regard

  21. One passage that was particularly interesting was chapter 6 and its events. The part that made this interesting and noticeable is that Scout, Jem, and Dill decide to go and try to see inside of the Radley household. Has anybody else noticed the three’s urge to take risks that could get them into big trouble? Clearly, the three have been getting closer to the house since Jem touched it in his dare. They’ve been getting more comfortable around it and also tried to send a message inside the house. Now, they’ve decided to try to peep inside. It’s understandable that with every visit that nothing happens, they want to test their luck. But once they push it too far, and get caught, you’d expect them to stop. Maybe to think that they’ve just been threatened with a shotgun, so it’s not very smart to go back. But nevertheless, Jem Just has to go back and get his pants. Really? You’re pants? This man has just fired a shotgun shell into the air and you are thinking about getting your pants back that you left there? This topic is worth discussing not for the humor, but for mainly its value in trying to learn the mindset that the three have, but mainly Jem, since Scout and Dill somewhat have common sense.

    • This is a very intriguing comment! I think that maybe Jem went to retrieve his pants to help himself, because if he left them, he would leave a trace of himself. Although they are involved in a dangerous mission, it’s almost child’s play, because they are curious, and are constantly looking for a game to play, or an adventure to have.

  22. After my very busy weekend of rehearsals, I was finally able to sit down and read chapters 4-7 this evening. A passage that I thought was worth analyzing was in chapter 4 when Scout, Dill, and Jem began to play as the Radley family. This was a very strange scene to read because they would act out the scene when Boo stabbed his father. I think that Atticus was testing the kids when he didn’t specifically tell them to stop playing, but he took the scissors away as a hint. I was confused when Jem said that Boo was dead, and that his body was in the chimney. The kids seem to be terrified of Boo, but I wonder how they feel about the rest of the family. If Jem thinks that Boo is dead, and if he isn’t superstitious, why is he so frightened of Boo and the house. And what did Scout hear at the end of the chapter. Could it have been Boo?

  23. In chapters 4-7 of To Kill a Mockingbird, we get more information on the Radleys. The Radleys are a very strange family, and the children wonder why Arthur Radley, also known as Boo Radley won’t come out of the house. He is obviously there, because Miss Maudie says, “…He’s alive Jean Louis, because I haven’t seen him carried out yet.” (pg.48). A part of the chapters we read that I thought was very interesting was when Dill, Scout, and Jem spent the summer doing a little performance about the Radleys. “Jem parceled out our roles: I was Mrs. Radley, and all I had to do was come out and sweep the porch. Dill was old Mr. Radley: he walked up and down the sidewalk and coughed when Jem spoke to him. Jem, naturally, was Boo: he went under the steps and shrieked and howled from time to time.” (pg.43). It is interesting how the kids wrote a script and would perform a story all day with no one watching. It must have been there obsession with finding out what is wrong with the Radleys that drove them to do this. It makes sense after all, living through the events might allow them to understand it more. It was surprising when the text said that Dill was a fabulous actor, and even his worst performances were good. I don’t really know what that would mean in the long run, but I think that is a question that can be open for discussion. We will see in future chapters what is really wrong with the Radleys, and how the children will find out.

    • Patsy, I think that you used good quotes and evidence, and I like the idea that Jem, Dill, and Scout made up the play so as to learn more about the Radleys. In regards to Dill’s acting skills, I think it’s saying that in Scout’s eyes, Dill was so good at playing different parts and playing them well, that even his very worst performance was still very good. Great post overall!

  24. Chapters 4 through 7 were very interesting, and many things happened in them. The most intriguing thing that happened, was when Mr. Radley filled up the knotting hole in the tree, where Jem and Scout found all sorts of treasures that seemed to be specifically for them. The children asked Mr. Radley why he did it, and he said that the tree was dying, and that you fill the holes with cement when they die. This is very strange, because when the kids asked Atticus if he thought the tree was dead, he answered, “‘Why no, son, I don’t think so. Look at the leaves, they’re all green and full, no brown patches anywhere… That tree’s as healthy as you are, Jem.” (pg 84) Furthermore, the timing of the incident is also very suspicious. Mr. Radley filled the tree the day after Jem and Scout left a note in the hole, thanking the owner for leaving them the treasures. This leads me to believe that Mr. Radley may be the owner of the trinkets, and he just didn’t want any further contact with the children, besides him putting the objects in the tree, and them taking them out. If it is him, he probably doesn’t want anyone to know, so he filled up the hole so as to lessen the chance of his identity being revealed.

  25. In chapters 4-7 the part that really stood out to me was when Scout and Jem would keep getting gifts on the knot hole on the Radleys tree. It was strange at first when Scout got chewing gum from the tree and took it. She didn’t know who it came fro me or how it got there. When scout and Jem both went to the tree again they found another gift awaiting for their arrival. One of the most mind boggling parts was when Jems pants got sown up for him when he ripped them at the Radleys fence. Soon however Mr Radley cemented the knot hole and said the tree was dying. Clearly however it was healthy and definitely not dieing. “The one on the corner of the Radley lot comin‘ from school.” “Yes?” “Is that tree dyin‘?” “Why no, son, I don’t think so. Look at the leaves, they’re all green and full, no brown patches anywhere — ” (page 84) This brings up the obvious question of does Mr. Radley know about the gifts and if so is he the one who is keeping them their. Although this may be a possibility I don’t believe it is true. Maybe Boo is sending the gifts and that Mr. Radley doesn’t want Boo to do it.

  26. “Jem told me I was being a girl, that girls always imagined
    things, that’s why other people hated them so, and if I started behaving like one I could just go off and find some to play with”
    In this passage, more of the prejudiced that dominates this town is shown. People already classify other people according to the family they come from, but now it is shown they classify based on gender as well. Women are apparently frowned upon, and Jem gets the impression one way or another that people hate them so. This also shows that the narrator considers herself more like a boy and does things more appealing to boys, as well as playing games with boys. She also considers being called a girl something of an insult. This could potentially cause conflict with the town and the narrator about what role she will play in the society, especially seeing how the narrator seems to have a gift for learning things well above her supposed level.

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