“Atticus is a gentleman, just like me!”

Tonight, after you have re-read chapters 10-11 of To Kill a Mockingbird, please respond on our blog:

  • What passage or passages strike you as interesting or singular and why?
  • What questions do you want to discuss with the class?
  • Why do you think these questions may generate interesting discussion?
  • Remember, a good discussion question does not have a single answer.  Good questions lead to interesting conversations.

Also remember to:

  • Annotate!  Annotate!  Annotate!  Use post-it notes to mark important passages and to write two or three discussion questions to direct our discussion tomorrow.  Remember!  Everyone must participate.
Mockingbird blog #4

46 thoughts on ““Atticus is a gentleman, just like me!”

  1. “Our father didn’t do anything. He worked in an office, not in a drugstore. Atticus
    did not drive a dump-truck for the county, he was not the sheriff, he did not farm,
    work in a garage, or do anything that could possibly arouse the admiration of
    anyone….He did not do the things our schoolmates’ fathers did: he never went hunting, he
    did not play …. or fish or drink or smoke. He sat in the livingroom and read,” (pg. 118).
    This passage strikes me because it is another example of stereotypes in the novel. My last blog was about stereotypical girls during the time period, and now, stereotypes for father’s. Atticus is different from other fathers, he doesn’t have a unique job, but works in an office. He doesn’t enjoy hunting and drinking, but loves to read. Scout is ashamed that her father isn’t like the fathers of some kids at her school. He is different from all the fathers. Fathers are stereotyped as strong men, than smoke, drink and hunt, but Atticus is completely the opposite. The stereotypical fathers are not good influences for children. During this time period, many were not educated on how bad smoking and drinking was. To have parents that gamble, smoke, and drink are not good influences for growing children. Atticus is a great father. He looks out for his kids while not drinking or smoking. He reads, which is also a good aspect of his character. Atticus is the type of father I would like to have, not the stereotypical ones.

    • Good job on your blog, Ellie. I think I would also choose Atticus as a father between the stereotypical ones, since he’s so wise and caring.

  2. “She said she was going to leave this world beholden to nothing and nobody. Jem,
    when you’re sick as she was, it’s all right to take anything to make it easier, but it
    wasn’t all right for her. She said she meant to break herself of it before she died,
    and that’s what she did.”

    After reading chapters 10-11, I’ve noticed many passages that interest me. The one that strikes me the most is at the end of chapter 11 when Atticus discusses Mrs. Dubose. Mrs. Dubose had always been rude and called insults at Jem and Scout. The two Finch sibling constantly had to force themselves to keep their head and avoid bursting into anger. Consequently, from their point of view, they thought she was just a mean old lady who did nothing but yell at people. On the other hand, Atticus knew she was a brave person. Unknown to Jem and Scout, Mrs. Dubose was a morphine addict, and one of her morals was not to die in debt to anything. She believed in her values strongly enough that she was brave enough to wane off the morphine, even if it meant shortening her life. Admittedly, it took me a bit to realize what was going on here. However, now that I understand it, it deepens my understanding of the theme of point of view in the novel. Jem’s and Scout’s views of Mrs. Dubose differed from Atticus’s because they had been mistreated by her. However, Atticus knew that she was going through hard times and knew she was not who his children thought she was. This theme also connects to many other ideas in the story. For instance, in Maycomb, almost everyone hates black people. On the contrary, Atticus loves and respects everyone because of his morals, even if he is called out for it. Evidently, from different experiences and morals, different people’s points of view are unalike. I do not have any questions about the reading.

    • Great job on your blog! How you analyzed the views of the three characters is very intriguing! Honestly, I believe that the older a man or woman is, the wiser they are! Keep it up!

  3. In chapters 10-11, more is revealed about Scout and Jem’s father, Atticus. So far, we have only heard about Atticus as a good father, who wants to teach his children to be good to everyone, no matter what their skin color is. But, in these chapters, it is revealed that Atticus was once the best gun-shooter in the town, but that he gave it up. Scout and Jem thought that Atticus did things such as reading, instead of things such as playing football, and shooting guns. But now, they know that Atticus was once a fan of shooting guns, and that he was also the best at doing it. “…if he shot fifteen times and hit fourteen doves he’d complain about wasting ammunition.”(Pg. 130). But, Atticus decided to give up shooting, possibly for the reason that he realized he had an unfair advantage over all living things. Now, he has turned into a kind-hearted man, who stays away from most things physical, such as football. His goal is to teach his kids to be good to others, and to be nice people.

    • Great Job, William! I loved how you cut straight to the chase, and explain your thoughts about Atticus. I agree that now his goal is, indeed, to be good to others, and to be nice to people. Keep up the great work.

  4. As we venture into the depths of To Kill A Mockingbird, we learn more about the boy Jeremy Finch. He is an average boy, and he tries to keep her little sister from becoming a girl and a lady. Then suddenly, his view starts to change, from the moment that his father Atticus had shot the dog. He was so shocked at the talent Atticus had, that it seemed like his whole life was turned around. When he talked with Scout, in a surprise he said, “Atticus is a gentleman, just like me!”pp.131. It was shocking for Jem, a rowdy and tough kid, to call himself a gentleman. Never in his life had he ever hinted about wanting or being a gentleman. He suddenly starts to have a really bad temper, cutting Mrs. Dubose’s flowers and hurting Scout, causing him to face the consequences, which he deeply regrets. He starts to act really fussy. I hope to learn how that particular event had shocked him so much, and how turning twelve made his behavior go crazy.

    • I really like your bog! I didn’t notice that Jem stated acting differently as he turned twelve and saw Atticus shoot the dog. Keep up the good work. 🙂

  5. In chapters 10-11 of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, more information is given about the characterization of Atticus, Scout, and Jem. Atticus is quite older than most of the other fathers in Maycomb. His relatively advanced age often embarrasses his children, because he wears glasses and reads instead of hunting and fishing like the other men in town. One day, however, a mad dog appears, wandering down the main street toward the Finches’ house. Calpurnia alerts Atticus, who returns home with Heck Tate, the sheriff of Maycomb. Heck brings a rifle and asks Atticus to shoot the animal. Atticus does so, hitting the dog with his first shot despite his considerable distance from the dog. This amazes Jem and Scout very much. I wonder why Atticus never spoke of this to Jem and Scout. Atticus also says he loves all people regardless of the color of their skin.This further shows that Atticus is old-fashioned, wise, and reserved as well as a genuinely good person of peace. Later on, Mrs. Dubose tells the children that Atticus is not any better than the “n***ers and trash he works for,” and Jem loses his temper. In his fury, Jem takes a baton from Scout and destroys all of Mrs. Dubose’s camellia bushes. As a result, he is forced to go to her house every day for a month and read to her. Scout accompanies him as they fulfill their punishment. This proves that Jem is not reserved, and isn’t afraid of a fight. Why did Atticus force Jem to go and read with Mrs. Dubose even after she said all those mean things about him? Isn’t Jem and Scout used to people speaking badly their dad? I predict that Atticus will continue being the way he is despite other people’s opinions of him.

    • Ajay, I like all of the great discussion questions you have in your post, and I think you analyzed all of the occurrences you mentioned very well. Good job!

  6. “ Our father didn’t do anything. He worked in an office, not a drugstore…he was not the sheriff…or do anything that could possibly arouse the admiration of anyone..”(pp. 188).

    “Atticus can’t do anything… ‘You’d be surprised’ said Miss Maulie. ‘There’s life in him yet’…. ‘he’s the best checker-player…he can play a Jew’s Harp…still ashamed of him?”( pp. 120-129).

    These are the parts of the chapter that I found the most interesting. Scout is disappointed in her father because he is not like other fathers, who do all the so-called cool things, and that she has nothing to brag about in school. Therefore, she is laughed at and ridiculed. However, Scout later learns from Miss Maudie that Atticus is actually a very talented person, and Scout just doesn’t know about what he is capable of. Atticus never found it cool, or something to brag about, that he was very capable of things, like others. At least, that is what I assume. This makes me think of the theme, appearance versus reality. When people, especially the children in the novel, look at Atticus, they think he is a very boring dad, and has nothing special about him. Add the fact that he is ending a black in court, and people think he is a disgrace. However, the reality is that Atticus is special, and different from the rest of the fathers in town. He has things that he is good at, and is nice and caring for his children. Although he has different values from everyone else, he is still a great person. I am surprised that Atticus did not show off his skills to his kids, because he did not want them bragging about him in school. He does not really care about what people think about him.

  7. A passage I really loved was towards the end when Mrs Dubose passes on and leaves Jem one white flower from the garden he tore up. I thought it was a particularly beautiful moment because it was Mrs Dubose’s redemption. To make up for all the hurt she caused Jem, Scout and probably many other people she gave Jem the flower. Maybe as a plea for forgiveness or maybe as a peace offering. I believe she didn’t want to die with unnecessary baggage and as Jem said, die free, so she had to make it right with Jem. Then at first Jem rejected the offering, and wanted her to leave him alone but once he understood what it symbolized you could tell he cherished it and truly did appreciate it. I think it was very important for Jem’s character and was very nature of him.

  8. One interesting scene that stood out to me in tonight’s reading occurred when Atticus shot the dog in the middle of the street. While Scout and Jem go off exploring one day, they come across Tim Richardson, a mutt that is considered the town pet. They see the dog acting strange, and after showing Calpurnia, they realize the dog has gone “mad.” Calpurnia frantically calls many people, including Atticus and and their neighbors to try and get rid of the Tim Robinson. Atticus and the sheriff eventually come by. The sheriff then asks Atticus to shoot and kill the dog. Scout recounts, saying, “The rifle cracked. Tim Johnson leaped, flopped over and crumpled on the sidewalk in a brown-and-white heap. He didn’t know what hit him,” (page 127). Jem and Scout are stunned by this scene, and I don’t blame them. This event in the novel ties in with the theme “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover,” as it showed an unexpected side of Atticus. Thus far, Atticus has been presented as kind, courageous and respectful. Hence, the episode of him shooting the dog seems out of character, especially to Jem and Scout. They have never witnessed this type of behavior from him before, and it is quite an eye opening experience. However, the neighbors are not surprised, as they have known Atticus to be “the deadest shot in Maycomb County in his time,” (page 129). To me, this is surprising as it occurs all of a sudden. However, it seems Atticus has changed over time, as illustrated in him first being resistant to taking the shot. This makes me wonder if there is anything else that is unknown about Atticus Finch’s character. It will be interesting to see in the upcoming chapters if any other characteristics of Atticus are revealed

    • I agree with you, Matthew. There is always more to learn about this novel and it would be very interesting to learn more about Atticus. Good job.

  9. In chapters 10-11, we came across many interesting passages. One passage is,
    ” Our father didn’t do anything. He worked in an office, not a drugstore. Atticus did not a dump-truck for the county, he was not a sheriff, he did not farm, work in a garage, or do anything that could possibly arouse the admiration of anyone.” (P.118) This passage really resonates with me, because Atticus remind me of my father. My father wears glasses, reads, and is a lawyer, too. The way my father raises me reminds of how long Atticus is. My father has many talents, and he isn’t like everyone else, they both aren’t steriotypical. This shows a theme of pride and reputation, and how even at the youngest ages, preservation of out reputations are engraved in us. You could say that it is part of Scout’s “Moral Universe” for her to think that way. Her father is special in his own way, and he decides not to follow stereotypes, and goes by what he thinks is right, and that is a crucial part of Atticus’s Moral Universe. In conclusion, this passage is very interesting, and analyzing gave me insight on deeper meanings of this book.

  10. As a kid many people, including myself, had an animal. One of the most common animals is a dog. Many people, even if they don’t have a dog, even go to the extreme as to cry during movies when a dog dies. But this isn’t always the case. For instance in chapter 10 of the fantastic book, To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, the father of the main character, Atticus, shoot a puppy. The puppy is depicted as a mad dog. Although, many may say that a dog is a dog no matter what and the dog is still a living creature in which doesn’t deserve to die. With this, a new question arose as to why someone would kill an animal that is so cute and innocent. When this question was going through my mind, I thought about why Lee would’ve added this scene. I came to the conclusion that maybe she added this scene as a start to a new motif in which explains how sometimes fast actions such as clicking the trigger to a gun can cause something so innocent to get hurt. She could’ve also included this scene to show how different people view things differently. For example, Miss Maudie said, “I guess he decided he wouldn’t shoot till he had to, and he had to today.” yet Atticus said that using a gun wasn’t what gentleman should be doing. All in all the sad scene of a dog dying left me with some questions and shock.

  11. “You know, she was a great lady”(pg.149)
    This is when Mrs.Dubose dies and Atticus is talking to Jem about her. This is shocking because all Mrs. Dubose ever did was make fun of Atticus. This tells us a lot about Atticus as a person. He also thought “…I wanted you to see what real courage is…”(pg .149) Atticus thought she was courageous because she spoke her mind. She voiced her own opinion. And she beloved in whatever she wanted. “She was the bravest person I ever knew”(pg. 149). Atticus thinks she is brave for the same reason: she does my let what other people think affect her.

    • I choose this passage too. I’m wondering the significance of Mrs. Dubose, other than the life lessons taught to Jem and Scout.

  12. In chapters 10-11 of To Kill A Mockingbird, at the very beginning of chapter 10, the title comes up. When Atticus is telling his kids what to shoot and and what not to shoot at, he mentions that killing a mockingbird is a sin. This reminds me of the way black people were treated back then. They didn’t do anything wrong, but they were still treated unfairly. When Atticus talks about his case, he says that the person he is defending is a black, and that the black will lose. It doesn’t matter what evidence there is that the black is innocent, the white’s case will still win. This is sort of like a mockingbird. They do nothing wrong, and it is unfair and sinful to kill them. This should be the way with blacks. “‘Your father’s right,’ she said. ‘Mockingbirds don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.’”(119) In those times, the blacks often do nothing wrong yet they are discriminated and harmed. This might tie in with the title.

    • I just noticed that the knot in the tree on the cover of the book might be the same knot that Jem and Scout get the gum from. I don’t know if you guys already noticed that or if it was insanely obvious from the beginning but I’m putting it out there anyway. 🙂

  13. Atticus is a 50 year old father who singlehandedly takes care of his two children, Jem and Scout, of course with the help of Calpurnia. From what I see, Atticus doesn’t care about what others think of him, he doesn’t brag, and he doesn’t interfere with others’ lives. In Chapter 10, Scout mentions how all the dads play the football game, but Atticus always mentions he’s too old. Like Ellie mentioned above, Atticus isn’t the sterotypical dad or individual in this town either. Even due to the environment around Atticus, he isn’t afraid to represent Tom Robinson, a Negro. It has the whole town talking and calling him a “n-lover”. Also, another point that may be a question is maybe Atticus was a whole different person before he had kids and grew old. It is mentioned that he was the best shooter in town. He was young man finding himself. Maybe he changed for his kids? Just a thought.

  14. One important part of chapters 10 and 11 is when Atticus acts differently. Early in chapter 10, Scout makes a statement about Atticus that portrays the idea of stereotypes. She thought that Atticus’s life was boring and that he was different than other fathers. Later, Calpurnia declares that there is a mad dog and a cop asks Atticus to shoot the dog. After seeing Atticus being able to shoot it, Scout and Jem are surprised. Usually, Atticus is calm, respectful, and caring. However, in this scene, he becomes a whole new person. The scene shows that he can be cruel if necessary. Later, Scout finds out that Atticus used to be the best shooter in the county. He would never miss. This scene not only indicates stereotypes, it also portrays the idea that one should never judge a book by its cover. When Scout and Jem were given rifles, Atticus refused to teach them. He made Uncle Jack instruct them. This is odd considering the fact that he was the best shooter yet he did not want to teach his children. He probably decided to quit shooting permanently unless absolutely necessary. When people thought that the dog was dangerous, Atticus might have only decided to shoot it because it was putting others in danger. Maybe he gave up shooting because he once killed a Mockingbird. Maybe that is why he warns Scout and Jem to never kill a Mockingbird. Maybe he was forced to give up shooting. Again, we learn more about them, but at the same time learn less about the characters.

  15. Tonight we read chapters eleven and twelve, finishing part one. We see a mad dog running, or should I say moseying through town. Everyone freaks out and Atticus needs to shoot him. We learn about Atticus’s past through this. Also, Jem and Scout have some experiences with Mrs. Dubose. Every day she ridicules them about their father and one day Jem loses it. He takes Scout’s baton and beats her flowers. When Atticus hears about this he makes Jem go and apologize, where Jem makes an agreement with Mrs. dubose to read to her every day (except sundays) for a few weeks. After this period of time Mrs. dubose passes away. The passage I have selected is atticus on Mrs. Dubose, after her passing.

    “She was. She had her own views about things, a lot different from mine,
    maybe… son, I told you that if you hadn’t lost your head I’d have made you go
    read to her. 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 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.
    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.”

    This adds to our understanding of Mrs. Dubose, as well as Atticus’ parenting views. He likes to teach the kids through experience. This passage is critical to the characterization of Atticus.

  16. In these chapters we learn a good bit of new things. What intrigued me the most was that Atticus seemingly so happy and content and calm, is the best shot in town. So far, Atticus has only wanted his kids to be well behaved and nice. And Atticus himself is very well behaved, especially when it comes t controlling his own anger. He has been trying to teach Jem and Scout the same thing, and the good things that come from controlling your temper and acting nice and being honest. But what I find so interesting is that Atticus hasn’t been completely honest with his own children. Every parent has their own secretes that they don’t want their children to know, and they should have their own secretes, t’s nature. But Atticus hides a secret that would make his children proud of him. They always thought that he was the most boring father in all of Maycomb, but now they know that he is the deadliest shot to live there. Atticus hides this though because he is naturally calm and doesn’t like that he has this gift. Atticus is constantly telling Scout that what other people say and believe doesn’t matter, it’s how you think of yourself. Which is exactly why he is defending Tom. Atticus wouldn’t be able to live with himself if he didn’t defend Tom, no matter what people say about him. hich is why I think he hides his skill. Even though other people look at him in aw when they see his ability he is ashamed of it. And he is trying to help himself live with himself by hiding this skill. Even though Scout doesn’t understand, Atticus has his reasons, and they’re good reasons too. Although if Atticus were to read this he would tell Scout that it doesn’t matter that I say his reasons are good, because he already believes in himself that his reasons are good and it doesn’t matter if I think he has stupid reasons or if he has the most brilliant reasons.

  17. “Read to her?” “Yes sir. She wants me to come every afternoon after school and Saturdays and read to her out loud for two hours. Atticus, do I have to?” “Certainly.” “But she wants me to do it for a month.” “Then you’ll do it for a month.” Jem planted his big toe delicately in the center of the rose and pressed it in. Finally he said, “Atticus, it’s all right on the sidewalk but inside it’s — it’s all dark and creepy. There’s shadows and things on the ceiling…” Atticus smiled grimly. “That should appeal to your imagination. Just pretend you’re inside the Radley house.”
    This passage in chapters 10-11 reminded me of things we have previously encountered. I can’t have been the only person to have been reminded by when Pip started to visit Miss Havisham by this scene. Six days a week Jem had to read to Mrs. Dubose for an entire month. When Mrs. Dubose ask Jem tored for her ot reminds me of how Miss Havisham asked Pip to play for her. Furthermore, they both live in similar houses. While Miss Havisham lives in a very large house and Mrs. Dubose lives in a smaller house both live on gloomy and creepy places. Atticus obviously doesn’t know about the universe that Pip lives in and so compares Mrs. Dubose’s house to the Radley’s house. Atticus likely doesn’t know about the Radleys house or doesn’t think of it as creepy. However, he has heard enough through Jems plays about what Jem thinks about the house and likely thinks this also serves as a lesson for, not only destroying the flowers but making fun of the Radleys. This section about the story and we later find out that the reason she has jem read to her was because she was trying to overcome a morphine addiction. Now that we have finished the first half of the book will it again be similar to Great Expectations in that we will soon have the rising action? Only time and tomorrow’s reading will let us find out.

  18. “Atticus, you must be wrong…”
    “How’s that?”
    “Well, most folks seem to think they’re right and you’re wrong…”
    “They’re certainly entitled to think that, and they’re entitled to full respect for their opinions,” said Atticus, “but before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.”
    (pp. 139-140)

    This quote reminds me of what we discussed in class today. Atticus is one of those people who doesn’t let the opinions of his community affect him. He stays true to his beliefs, despite what other people may think. So, because Atticus has the ability to stay true to his own beliefs and not listen to his moral universe, does that make a moral universe bad? Well, in some cases, yeah. I mean, everyone should be able to have their own opinion and not be judged about it or influenced by what other people think. I’m not saying that two people can’t agree on something, they certainly can, but if you were to just go along with what another person is saying without really understanding them or challenging them, then it really isn’t your opinion at all. In the book, all of Maycomb think that Atticus is crazy for actually defending Negroes with actual effort, as opposed to what the other lawyers do, which is just not to try. That is what makes Atticus so good at being a lawyer. And what makes him even better is his ability to be independent. He believes in what he is doing, and he believes in defending the rights of those who were discriminated against in society. However, moral universes aren’t always bad. They can open your mind to new concepts and ideas. The trick is to find a balance between the two, where you aren’t so stubborn that you won’t hear people out, but you aren’t so passive that you can’t make your own decision.

  19. For tonight’s homework, we read chapters 10-11. Within those chapters, we were really able to understand how Atticus wants his kids to act and what his “moral universe” is. Throughout the novel there have been many times where, Atticus has set up ways that he wants Jem and Scout to act. One of those times, occurs during chapter 11. After Jem “loses his head” and lets his temper get the best of him Ms. Dubose is not happy. She decides to have Jem pay for what he has done and read to her in the afternoons for a month. Jem doesn’t want to do it at all ad makes that annoyingly clear to Atticus. Jem finds her to be old and scary, and hates the rude things she says about Atticus and the rest of their family. Jem wants to quit reading to her because he believes that she doesn’t deserve it. He tells Atticus that she is rude and that she calls Atticus a “n***** lover”. Jem expects Atticus to realize that indulging in her ways was a mistake and that Jem should stop paying a so called debt to her. But the exact opposite happens, Atticus completely excuses her for the things she said about him no matter how bad they are and choses to help Jem to rise above and be the better person. This shows us that Atticus always tries to do what he feels is the right thing, no matter how hard someone makes it for him to push on. As a father, he decides to plant this wisdom on his kids because these principles are what he has set up for himself and how he believes it should be in society. It is hard for Jem to understand, but Atticus sees Ms. Dubose as a sick, old lady that deserves some help and enjoyment in her life. And so, if Attius can help it, that is what he will achieve for her. From this, we can tell that Atticus is a really great person and that Scout and Jem have a great influence among them, even if the town doesn’t see it in the same way we do.

  20. “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.”
    To begin, in chapter 10, it is revealed that Atticus was the best marksmen Maycomb had seen, but has hid this fact from Jem and Scout for their entire lives, until it is accidentally revealed by the townspeople.
    In chapter 11, Jem gets increasingly annoyed at Mrs. Dubose, who keeps shouting rash insults at him until he loses his calm one day, and tears up all of her flowers with Scout’s baton and breaks it. As punishment, he is to go to her house, care for the flowers so that they regrow, and read to her every afternoon for a month. During this time, Jem and Scout really get to see first hand how disgusting she really is up-close, and how difficult it was for her to even concentrate on anything. A month after when the entire deal is over, Atticus tells Joe how he wrote her will and how she had just died. She was so mean because she was addicted to painkillers and was slowly dying from a terrible disease. She had believed she had nothing and no one to really pass the memory of her being on, and because of that, was the bravest woman ever to keep living until the very end. This was the lesson that Atticus had likely wanted to teach Jem and Scout since they found out he was a marksman. He wanted them to know that courage is not a man holding a gun, but a human facing a hardship to the end, no matter what the cost or likeliness to lose.

  21. In chapter 11 of tonight’s reading, Atticus reveals an interesting fact about Mrs. Dubose, and it is that she is a morphine addict who believes that she should never be in debt to anyone. The kids believed that she was a nasty old lady who had nothing better to do than nag at them, but Atticus knows that she is dealing with a lot. Atticus is a character with lots of empathy and wisdom, therefore he has good morals. Atticus defends african american people in his town as a lawyer, because he knows that no one else would do it. He is also there to help a neighbor always, and he does not judge. In Scout and Jem’s hometown, there are many secrets, and people seem to be involved in everyone else’s business. But Atticus ignores it. \He even tells Scout in chapter nine to fight with her head, not her fists. And with Boo Radley, Atticus doesn’t seem to believe that he is insane or dangerous. He has very good ethics, and this is what makes him such an admirable character.

  22. The passage I found the most intriguing in chapters 10 and 11, was the second to last one of chapter 11:

    “She had her own views about things, a lot different from mine, maybe. . . son, I told you that if you hadn’t lost your head I’d have made you go read to her. 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 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. 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.” (pg 149)

    This passage is Atticus’ words to Jem, about how Mrs. Dubose may have been cold and mean, but she was really very brave to try and quit her morphine addiction before she died. I find it interesting that Atticus never seemed to mind when she said nasty words about him being a “n****r lover.” Even though she did say such things, he never acted rude back towards her, and he tried to teach Jem to do the same. The fact that Atticus said he would have sent Jem to read to Mrs. Dubose even if she hadn’t requested him to, proves how good-natured and accepting Atticus is towards everyone. He acknowledged that she was trying her best to break her addiction, and he wanted to teach Jem to acknowledge the same kind of thing in the future. I wonder if Atticus will ever break his nonchalant manner when people torment him and his family about his job, since the text is so focused on making it seem that way. A lot of the time, when one particular thing about a character is focused on and repeated, it means that eventually, that character will break that so-called manner and surprise everyone with the unexpected action. Perhaps Atticus will hear his children being picked on, and decide that enough is enough.

  23. In chapter 10-11 the characterization of Atticus is more developed. We see at the beginning Scout feels as though Atticus is a boring plain old man. She wanted a cool person as her father, and she didn’t think Atticus was cool at all.“ Our father didn’t do anything. He worked in an office, not a drugstore…he was not the sheriff…or do anything that could possibly arouse the admiration of anyone..”(pp. 188). This may have been the case but Scout barely even knew the true talents of his father. As described by Miss Maulie he was good and talented at many things. Even after knowing this scout still thought her father was a boring man. It was until she found out he could shoot that she started to like him. Atticus however never wanted his kids to know these things about him. This brings up the question if he acts this way on purpose towards Jem and Scout and that he wants them to believe he is a simple man. Furthermore this text shows how appearance can affect how you view someone since Scout never even considered that Atticus could be a good shot.

  24. There were many interesting topics in chapters 10-11. In this blog post, I wanted to talk about some of the funny aspects in the reading. The day after Jem turns twelve, he gets a lot birthday cash to spend. The only logical thing to do would be to go and buy toys and everything Scout and Jem want.
    Together, they purchased a toy steam engine for Jem and a baton for Scout. One part of the novel that made me laugh out loud was when they passed Mrs. Dubose, who accuses them of playing hooky, even though it’s Saturday. She is a funny character that was introduced. I thought she was crazy and hilarious, but the children hate how mean she is to them. “Jem and I hated her. Whenever we passed her house, she would glare at us and ask us questions about what we were doing. She would say we were up to no good. She said we wouldn’t grow up to be anything good. Even if I tried to be nice and say, ‘Hey, Mrs. Dubose,’ she would yell at me, ‘Don’t you say hey to me, you ugly girl! You say good afternoon, Mrs. Dubose!’ She called us sassy, disrespectful mutts and that it was a disgrace that Atticus let us run wild.” (pg. 114) Overall, I was wondering throughout the chapters why Mrs. Dubose is so mean, and that is a question we can discuss in class. I am excited to keep reading and we what happens next!

  25. Miss Maudie grinned wickedly. “Well now, Miss Jean Louise,” she said, “still think your father can’t do anything? Still ashamed of him?” “Nome,” I said meekly. “Forgot to tell you the other day that besides playing the Jew’s Harp, Atticus Finch was the deadest shot in Maycomb County in his time.”Pg. (129)
    As I read, I found this to be a very insightful and interesting part of the text. In this part we find that atticus is the deadest shot in Maycomb, and that he simply hasn’t revealed it to his children. This is an essential part of Atticus’s character. Throughout the book Atticus never brags or shows off his talent for shooting, only uses it when needed. This is insightful to his character. It lets us know how civil Atticus really is. He does not pride himself on things that others would, like the accuracy of his shot, but rather the fairness of his character. Later, Jem sees this, and asks scout not to talk about it at school as Atticus would not want to be known for his shooting abilities.

  26. The passage that strikes me as interesting is when Atticus shot and killed the dog. The reason this is interesting is because Atticus is almost the intellectual of the village. When he has the best shot in the village, it’s a big surprise to me since he seems like the type of person to sit by a fire and read to his grandchildren. This has me wondering what his backstory really is. Perhaps he could have had an event that made him resent weapons, like him killing someone. Perhaps him killing someone could have made him feel horrible, so he vowed to never shoot a gun at someone again. Any other thoughts on this topic?

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