November 30

“Maycomb was an old town, but it was a tired old town when I first knew it.”

Tonight please read chapters 1-3 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 comment on at least one other post in this thread.
  • Also, consider questions you may want to discuss on Monday.
  • Don’t forget to 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 #1


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Posted November 30, 2018 by equinson in category To Kill a Mockingbird

36 thoughts on ““Maycomb was an old town, but it was a tired old town when I first knew it.”

  1. Myles Ng

    “When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow. When it healed, and Jem’s fears of never being able to play football were assuaged, he was seldom self-conscious about his injury. His left arm was somewhat shorter than his right; when he stood or walked, the back of his hand
    was at right angles to his body, his thumb parallel to his thigh. He couldn’t have cared less, so long as he could pass and punt.”

    I choose this paragraph because this is a paragraph that provides very good insight into the characteristics of the older brother of the main character. This paragraph show that he is very dedicated to his sport. It also shows that he does not care what others think about him as long as he can continue doing the thing he loves. Since Jem is the older brother of the main character, maybe his personality might have rubbed off on the main character, Scout. Having this dedicated personality this could influence how they as siblings react and take in certain things.

    Reply
  2. janem

    “Calpurnia bent down and kissed me. I ran along, wondering what had come over her. She had wanted to make up with me, that was it. She had always been too hard on me, she had at last seen the error of her fractious ways, she was sorry and too stubborn to say so. I was weary from the day’s crimes.” (p. 38)

    I chose this paragraph because I think it shows important details about two different characters. First, this paragraph shows important details about Calpurnia, a strict cook in Scout’s household. She is described as being, “…all angles and bones; she was nearsighted; she squinted; her hand was wide as a bed slat and twice as hard.” (pp. 6-7) Calpurnia is told from Scout’s perspective, which makes her sound very cold and mean. The above paragraph shows Calpurnia acting differently than how she typically does. She is soft and sweet towards Scout, which causes her to question the unusual activity.
    Second, the paragraph shows important details about the narrator, Scout. Calpurnia was very kind towards Scout, and she wonders why she is being so kind. Her childish mind causes her to assume that Calpurnia is being nice because she has realized she shouldn’t be so harsh and mean all of the time, when in reality, it is more realistic to assume that she sensed Scout had a bad day at school and missed Scout’s company.

    Reply
    1. trinityt

      I agreed! Through her ways of trying to comfort Scout, which was by making crackling bread and being nice to her, perhaps Calpurnia does care about Scout’s well being and does love her (like a mom to a daughter). This makes me think that maybe the reason why Calpurnia was mean to Scout was because maybe she wanted to discipline Scout, like any parent/s would do so that their kid/s would grow up with good behaviors.

      Reply
  3. Emily

    “First of all,” he said, “if you can learn a simple trick, Scout, you’ll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view… until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”(p. 39)

    This paragraph is of great significance because it introduces the reader to the morals of Atticus Finch. Through the simple act of a father explaining good behavior to his child, the reader gains insight into the morals if Atticus. While some might say that this moment is not significant, and that it is nothing more than Atticus trying to keep his daughter in school, it fails to account for the fact that Atticus would not say something that he did not believe in. From the little that we know about Atticus so far, he seems like a proud, honorable person who would never say something that he did not truly believe was right. Even if he is trying to get his daughter to go back to school, he also tries to understand the world through the perspective of others. From this short paragraph the readers learn a deeper truth about Atticus’s personality and his truest morals. If the author is including something as significant as this in the earliest stages of the book, that most likely means that it will be a crucial element throughout the rest of the novel. Perhaps the readers with come across a similar situation like this later on in the novel, and then we will learn it Atticus will follow the advice that he gave to his daughter.

    Reply
    1. Kate Ma.

      I agree with all you points about Atticus. This passage is extremely important as we have insight to Atticus that will affect the characters related to him later in the story.

      Reply
  4. jaclynl

    “Walter had picked himself up and was standing quietly listening to Jem and me.
    His fists were half cocked, as if expecting an onslaught from both of us. I stomped
    at him to chase him away, but Jem put out his hand and stopped me. He examined
    Walter with an air of speculation. “Your daddy Mr. Walter Cunningham from Old
    Sarum?” he asked, and Walter nodded.” (p. 30)

    I chose this paragraph because it shows a lot about both of the characters, Scout and Jem. With such an age gap between them, they definitely do have differences in their maturity levels. Chapter three starts with Scout acting quite rudely towards Walter Cunningham out of her own anger. She is upset that she got in trouble in class because of him. The way in which Scout reacts to her own anger against Walter can prove that she is not very mature or wise. Jem, on the other hand, is Scout’s fifth grade older brother. With his age, we can see the difference in his character. He acts like more of an adult towards Walter, inviting him over for dinner and also reprimands his sister for being unkind. Jem seems to be more of an empathetic character than Scout since he is able to see that Walter does not have much. Scout is more childish in the way she acts, only thinking about her own self. She only sees what is inconvenient for her instead of opening her eyes to look at the other side of things. This way of thinking could possibly cause her some conflict down the line.

    Reply
    1. Mikayla Friedman

      I completely agree with your analysis of Scout and Jem and their different characters. Jem is much more mature than Scout, but I think that Jem’s personality will eventually rub off on Scout and she will become more like him and their father. I also think Jem takes after Atticus, who is calm and kind-hearted.

      Reply
  5. MadiR

    “There was no hurry, for there was nowhere to go, nothing to buy and no money to buy it with, nothing to see outside the boundaries of Maycomb County. But it was a time of vague optimism for some of the people: Maycomb County had recently been told that it had nothing to fear but fear itself.”(p. 6)

    This passage is significant because it is an introduction to Scout, the main character’s home town of Maycomb. The reader learns that the town moves at a slow pace. The reference that Scout makes that there is nothing to buy and nothing to spend proves that there is extreme poverty in the town. This piece of the text and many remarks before lead the reader to believe the novel takes place during the Great Depression. This piece of the text above is significant because it introduces the reader to the setting, which will effect the plot and the characters.

    Reply
  6. Mikayla Friedman

    “A day was twenty-four hours long but seemed longer. There was no hurry, for there was nowhere to go, nothing to buy and no money to buy it with, nothing to see outside the boundaries of Maycomb County. But it was a time of vague optimism for some of the people: Maycomb County had recently been told that it had nothing to fear but fear itself,” (p. 6).

    This passage is significant because it provides insight into what will most likely be the setting of the novel: Maycomb County. According to Scout, the main character, Maycomb is an ordinary Southern town. It is boring, poor, and normal. I predict that as the story continues, something out of the ordinary will happen in Maycomb County, because if the town just stays like this the novel won’t be interesting. This passage is also of significance because it is told from Scout’s point of view. It shows the reader her perspective on the town she lives in; she obviously does not think much of Maycomb County. I find it interesting that Scout says there is ‘nothing to see outside the boundaries of Maycomb County.’ Maycomb is just a small little town, there must be so much more to see! Scout probably never travelled farther than the outskirts of Maycomb, so she is unaware of the greatness of the world that she lives in. I wonder if someone told Scout that there is nothing worth seeing outside of Maycomb. In addition, the last sentence of this passage is important. The fact that Maycomb County has nothing to fear further proves the point that it is a quiet little town with few mishaps. But, they should fear fear itself. This means the county should be afraid of the idea of fearing something or someone. If they don’t let fear even enter their minds, then they will be fine. I predict that something will happen in Maycomb County that will cause the people to become afraid, and turn Maycomb from an uneventful town into a extraordinary town, for better or for worse.

    Reply
    1. Emma Garbowitz

      I definitely agree with the fact that this paragraph introduces us to Maycomb County and provides the reader with a picture of what this town could be like. I also agree that it provides the reader with a decent description of the setting and what actually occurs in this town… nothing unusual.

      Reply
  7. Kate Ma.

    “There are some folks that don’t eat like us,” she whispered fiercely, “but you ain’t called on to contradict em at the table when they don’t…Don’t matter who they are, anybody sets foot in this house’s yo’ comp’ny , and don’t you let me catch you remarkin on their ways like you was so high and mighty!
    This passage intrigued me because Calpurnia was teaching Jean a valuable lesson. This is important in the book because it takes place where there is huge segregation between whites and blacks, and the fact that a black woman is schooling a white girl on judging people based on who they are was very unusual. Cal saw how bad Jean was treating Walter for being poorer and different from her usual, so Calpurnia stepped in and taught Jean to not treat someone substandard to you if they are poorer and different from you. This is ironic that a black person is teaching Jean this because most likely Calpurnia and many others were being treated substandard by many, just because of their race. How Jean treated Walter, is no different then how blacks were being treated in the 1930’s. I think that Harper Lee included this scene to make us think about the real situation and used Jean and Walter as a symbol of blacks and whites; Jean being the white person and Walter being the black person. That scene could be interpreted as that or it could just simply be not treating anyone substandard because of who they are and not just their race. This passage held a lot of thought and wondering about the deeper meaning.

    Reply
  8. Emma Garbowitz

    “He ain’t company, Cal, he’s just a Cunningham-”
    “Hush your mouth! Don’t matter who they are, anybody send foot in this house’s yo’ company, and don’t you let me catch you remarking’ on their ways like you was so high and mighty! Yo’ folks might be better’n the Cunninghams but it don’t count for nothin’ the way you’re disgracin’ ’em- if you can’t act fit to eat at the table you can just sit here and eat in the kitchen,”(p.33).

    This passage is very significant because it provides the reader and Scout with a very valuable lesson that can help you throughout life. Throughout this scene, Scout’s brother Jem invited Walter Cunningham back to their home for dinner during recess. He knows that Walter doesn’t have much food or anything at all but Jem knows it is a kind gesture. However, Scout seems to think otherwise until Calpurnia has a talk with her. While eating dinner with Walter, Scout seems to notice his odd eating habits (which she is disgusted by)and before she could say anything about it out loud, Calpurnia takes her into the kitchen and talks to her. When she tells Scout not to judge other people in any way and to view people with the same respect, Scout seems to be slightly thankful.
    I found this scene to be very important considering it teaches not only the reader, but also Scout how it is not the right thing to be judging people based on their actions or where they came from. Just because Walter eats differently then her doesn’t mean that there is anything weird about him or that he should be judged based on the way he ate. Also, since Walter grew up in a different, less rich environment than Scout doesn’t mean that he deserves to be treated with less respect than anyone else. He is still a person and should be treated with the same equality as everyone else.
    Another reason why I found this scene significant was because it introduces Calpurnia’s personality a little bit more. It is proving that she is a very wise person and looks out for Scout. Although Scout has the idea that Calpurnia doesn’t like her, Calpurnia never would have taught Scout this lesson if she didn’t really care about her. This shows that Calpurnia doesn’t want to see Scout get hurt and wants her to live life having the ability to learn lessons and to begin to realize right from wrong.
    In conclusion This passage was very significant because it teaches a great lesson and introduces Calpurnis’s personality a little bit more.

    Reply
  9. trinityt

    “Calpurnia bent down and kissed me. I ran along, wondering what had come over her. She had wanted to make up with me, that was it. She had always been too hard on me, she had at last seen the error of her fractious ways, she was sorry and too stubborn to say so. I was weary from the day’s crimes,” (p.38).

    This passage is significant because it shows some details about the characteristic of Calpurnia. Since Scout is the narrator, everything in this novel is told from her point of view. From Scout’s perspective, Calpurnia seems mean and cold. However, when Scout came back home from a bad day at school, Calpurnia was nice to her. Confused about the change in Calpurnia’s personality, Scout just assumed that Calpurnia felt bad about the times when she was too hard on Scout, and that being nice was her way of apologizing to Scout. However, in reality, Calpurnia sensed that Scout has had a bad day at school and is trying to comfort her, and that she misses Scout.

    Reply
    1. Laila Sayegh

      I agree! It is very interesting to see a character who is usually rude suddenly become kind. It shows that Calpurnia feels empathy and has a soft spot for Scout.

      Reply
  10. Hannah M.

    “Let’s not let our imaginations run
    with us, dear.”Now you tell your father not to teach you any more. It’s best to
    begin reading with a fresh mind. You tell him I’ll take over from here and try to undo the
    damage-”

    When reading this quote spoken by Miss Caroline in response to Scout’s reading abilities. It’s surprising how an adult is speaking negatively about a student who is able to read exceptionally at a young age. That is something to be astounished at not overlooked! This passage actually reminded me of the book/movie/musical, “Matilda”. Matilda’s parents didn’t like how smart she was and they forced her to watch TV and thought she was weird. Then came along the librarian and teacher that realized how special Matilda was and thought it was amazing of how smart she was! In, To Kill A Mockingbird, it reflects the theme of children, and education. Education is important to many civilians and for Miss Caroline as an inexperienced teacher to look at this well educated child in a negative way. Many people say that young people are clueless and still have lots to learn, but would it be so bad if they were already educated at a young age? Honestly I think Miss Caroline is both obnoxious and jelous because she tells Scout to “Try to undo the damage”, advising him to forget everything his father taught him and turn to a teacher that probably cant teach Scout half as good as his father taught him.
    She’s jelous that Scout has a father that can teach Scout more than a teacher can.

    Reply
    1. josepha4

      That’s a very interesting comparison, I agree, it is possible Miss Caroline looks down upon Scout for his exceptional skills at a young age, maybe she feels diminished because everything she teaches him is just a review of what he already knows.

      Reply
  11. Laila Sayegh

    “but if Walter and I had put ourselves in her shoes we’d have seen it
    was an honest mistake on her part. We could not expect her to learn all
    Maycomb’s ways in one day, and we could not hold her responsible when she
    knew no better.”

    I chose this piece of text from How To Kill A Mockingbird to analyze In class because not only does it show what type of characters Scout and Atticus are, it also shows us how Maycomb, Alabama differentiates from many other cities. First off, it shows us an empathetic and forgiving side to Atticus and Scout. Although Scout and Miss Caroline seem not to be very fond of one another, Scout was able to still feel for her and forgive her for her mistakes. This is a very good trait to be in both Atticus and Scout that we will most likely see again in the future. Secondly, this excerpt from the novel shows us how different Maycomb is. In most regular towns, it is not a well known fact what traits each family carries and which children belong to which family. In Maycomb, every family knows every family and what their personalities are like. This concept has already been mentioned several times and I’m sure this interesting topic will be spoken about again in future chapters.

    Reply
    1. Sophie

      I agree with your statement about how it is unusual for towns to know every detail about each family. I as well would like to see if it comes up again in the future.

      Reply
  12. stephaniec

    “Don’t matter who they are, anybody sets foot in this house’s yo’ company and don’t you let me catch you remarking’ on their ways like you was so high and mighty! Yo’ folks might be better’n Cunninghams but it don’t count for nothin’ the way you’re disgracing’ ’em…” (p.33)

    This passage from the text is significant because it introduces Calpurnia, the Finches’ housekeeper. However, from this passage the reader can also conclude that she is a mother figure to Scout. Here, Calpurnia is teaching Scout an important life lesson that seems to hold significance to this time period. She explains to her that social status and someone’s way of life is nobody else’s business, and should not affect the way they are treated. Not only did Calpurnia discipline Scout with her words, she introduced herself to the readers. From this, we can conclude that she is respectful and generous to all people.

    Reply
    1. MadiR

      I agree, Calpurnla is teaching Scout a very important lesson. I would like to see what Calpurnla does in other situations like this one.

      Reply
  13. Sophie

    “Our mother died when I was two, so I never felt her absence. She was a Graham from Montgomery; Atticus met her when he was first elected to the state legislature. He was middle-aged then, she was fifteen years his junior. Jem was the product of their first year of marriage; four years later I was born, and two years later our mother died from a sudden heart attack. They said it ran in her
    family. I did not miss her, but I think Jem did. He remembered her clearly, and sometimes in the middle of a game he would sigh at length, then go off and play by himself behind the car-house. When he was like that, I knew better than to bother him.” (p. 7)

    While reading any novel, I believe that one of the most important things to keep in mind is background knowledge. The paragraph above is most significant to me because it allows me to understand not only what Scouts life looks like today, but the history behind her family as well. As we already know, family situations and at home conditions have a large affect on your personality. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens provided a clear example of this. One of the characters named Estella was raised by her adoptive mother named Miss Havisham. Miss Havisham had a very unusual style of parenting, where she taught Estella to break men’s hearts. Many men went through heartache all because of how she was parented. In conclusion, if we have a strong understanding about the basis of Scout’s life, her future adventures/experiences will be easier to understand and deeply analyze. This paragraph definitely cleared up any confusion I had about Scouts life.

    Reply
  14. Sunna

    “‘It’s against the law, all right,’ said my father. ‘and it’s certainly bad, but when a man spends his relief checks on green whiskey his children have a way of crying from hunger pains. I don’t know of any landowner around here who begrudges those children any game their father can hit.’” (41)

    I chose this paragraph from To Kill A Mockingbird because it absolutely fascinated me. For one thing, it gives the reader insight as to how different people are treated in the eyes of the law. If Atticus hunted when he wasn’t supposed to, he would be charged for a crime. However, because Burris has children who need to be fed, and he won’t change his ways, he gets away with this. Atticus understand that the circumstances are completely different, although Scout doesn’t seem to understand his point. She sees it as a crime, hence my next point. Atticus understands that to truly know how to understand someone, you have to look at it from their perspective. This is what makes him so different from Scout. Atticus is much more open-minded and empathetic than Scout is, which is understandable considering that she’s merely a first grader. However, she is extremely narrow-minded and thinks in a more logical sense, but also in a selfish way. She only sees the world as black and white-or rather, in this situation, right or wrong. Scout needs to understand that everyone isn’t equal, and that situations will have different outcomes because we don’t all live the same lives. This paragraph truly helped me understand how laws are bent for different people, as well as how different Atticus and Scout are.

    Reply
  15. angelicac1

    “Calpurnia bent down and kissed me. I ran along, wondering what had come over her. She had wanted to make up with me, that was it. She had always been too hard on me, she had at last seen the error of her fractious ways, she was sorry and too stubborn to say so. I was weary from the day’s crimes,” (p.38).

    This paragraph shows great significance about Calpurnia’s personality. The reader is mainly exposed to Scout’s perspective because she is the narrator of this novel so Calpurnia is portrayed to us as an awful, cold individual who is the stern cook in Scout’s home. It turns out that beyond her usual cold personality, she has a soft spot for Scout, but Scout is deeply confused over it.

    Reply
    1. Maddie

      I agree that deep within Calpurnia she loves Scout, but I also think that Scout does many things to annoy her and she deserves what she gets from Calpurnia.

      Reply
  16. Hannah Pitkofsky

    “Our mother died when I was two, so I never felt her absence. She was a Graham
    from Montgomery; Atticus met her when he was first elected to the state
    legislature. He was middle-aged then, she was fifteen years his junior. Jem was
    the product of their first year of marriage; four years later I was born, and two
    years later our mother died from a sudden heart attack. They said it ran in her
    family. I did not miss her, but I think Jem did. He remembered her clearly, and
    sometimes in the middle of a game he would sigh at length, then go off and play
    by himself behind the car-house. When he was like that, I knew better than to
    bother him.” (p.7)

    I chose this paragraph because it shows some background about her older brother’s life. The main character doesn’t remember her mother because she never met her, however, Jem has known her and had a close relationship with her so her death was more tragic for him than it was for the main character. It also shows us, the readers, how Jem’s life has been negatively affected by the death of his dear mother. Jem misses his mother dearly, however, the main character doesn’t care the slightest because she was two years old when she died, however, Jem was about 6 years old at the time of her death. This paragraph is significant because it gives more background right at the beginning of the novel and it gives us some insight on a character that the main character in the novel is very close to.

    Reply
  17. Maddie

    “I rose graciously on Walter’s behalf: ‘Ah- Miss Caroline?’
    ‘What is it, Jean Louise?’
    ‘Miss Caroline, he’s a Cunningham.’
    I sat back down.
    ‘What, Jean Louise?’

    I chose the section because I found that throughout the first three chapters, we learn about the backstory of the town. We find out that different families are known for different reasons, and that if you are not familiar with Maycomb, it is unlikely that you will catch on to the references that are made between its residents. They have lots of “traditions” in a way. Everyone in the town knows all of the tendencies of each family, and if you are a newcomer, as Miss Caroline is, you will be unfamiliar with the people. Miss Caroline suffers from embarrassment when on two occasions she is unfamiliar with the backgrounds of students. First, with Walter Cunningham. She doesn’t realize that Walter is poor and can’t afford a lunch and would not be able to pay her back. It happens again with Burris, when she is unaware that he comes to school on the first day, and then never comes back until the next year. She ends up hearing nasty things said about her by the filthy Burris Ewell and getting her feelings hurt about it.

    Reply
    1. Brishti Sarkar

      This is an interesting thought and I liked how you brought up the point about how unfamiliar Miss Caroline is with the town.

      Reply
  18. Brishti Sarkar

    “Hush your mouth! Don’t matter who they are, anybody sets foot in this house’s yo’ comp’ny, and don’t you let me catch you remarkin’ on their ways like you was so high and mighty! Yo’ folks might be better’n the Cunninghams but it don’t count for nothin’ the way you’re disgracin’ ’em–if you can’t act fit to eat at the table you can just set here and eat in the kitchen!” (p. 33)

    This passage is very important in revealing the character of Calpurnia and setting the groundwork for how Scout is going to grow as a character. In this scene, Calpurnia is lecturing Scout about how she should be hospitable to Walter Cunningham and not judge him when he drowns his meal in syrup. From what we already know, Calpurnia and Scout do not seem to get along well. Calpurnia, who is much older than Scout and is a person of color, is shown to be empathetic towards Walter. She is understanding of his troubles and tries her best to discipline Scout into seeing his mindset. On the other hand, Scout is only six years old and does not know any better than what she has seen. She is close minded and speaks her mind (sometimes even too much) on several occasions. Most good works of literature feature the protagonist as they start off as bad people and grow and mature to become better ones. In this scene, you can see the way Scout starts off as a character, and which most likely change as the story goes on. It is highly likely she will become a better person as she grows up and matures in her way of thinking, and this is the starting point she is at when she begins that journey.

    Reply
  19. josepha4

    “First of all “, he said, “if you can learn a simple trick, Scout,you’ll get along better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view… until you climb in his skin and walk around in it”.(p.39)

    This conversation between Scout and Atticus is crucial to the story development. This takes place after school has finished, and the teacher Miss Caroline, told Scout not to read with his father anymore because it disrupts his learning at school. Scout decides completely abandoning school would be a good idea, and his father teaching her would be a sufficient substitute. However, this doesn’t work considering her father needs to attend his job to earn money. After Scout finishes the argument she compares herself to the Ewells. This is were her father’s advice comes to use. The Ewell’s are a lazy family who do bare minimum and get through the day. In fact they only make their son go to the first day of school to make sure he is registered, then he don’t come again. After using her father’s advice to put herself in their shoes and seeing what cost that puts on the family, and their way of living she decides to go. She doesn’t want to end up attending the first grade for three years like that family.
    This piece of advice is immensely important in real life as well. It can be used for empathy, to understand how others feel. Or, it can be used to show how your life isn’t as bad as it seems, like it was used for Scout. The advice her father gave her will stick with her and be useful her entire life.

    Reply
  20. Casey

    “Hush your mouth! Don’t matter who they are, anybody sets foot in this house’s yo’ comp’ny, and don’t you let me catch you remarkin’ on their ways like you was so high and mighty! Yo’ folks might be better’n the Cunninghams but it don’t count for nothin’ the way you’re disgracin’ ’em–if you can’t act fit to eat at the table you can just set here and eat in the kitchen!” (p. 33)

    This passage is important because it shows Calpurnia’s and Scout’s relationship. In this conversation between the two characters, we see how Calpurnia might be kind of a mother figure to Scout. Towards the start of the book, we learn that Scout’s mother died when she was young. Scout explains that she never really missed her mother, maybe because she didn’t have enough time to bond with her before her death. In this scene, Calpurnia is teaching Scout an important lesson on how she should treat others. Calpurnia believes that everyone should be given an equal amount of respect. Maybe equality will turn out to be one of the main themes of this story.

    Reply
  21. johnh1

    “People moved slowly then. They ambled across the square, shuffled in and out of the stores around it, took their time about everything. A day was twenty-four hours long but seemed longer. There was no hurry, for there was nowhere to go, nothing to buy and no money to buy it with, nothing to see outside the boundaries of Maycomb County. But it was a time of vague optimism for some of the people: Maycomb County had recently been told that it had nothing to fear but fear itself.”

    Reply
  22. johnh1

    (pressed send by accident) I chose this paragraph because it sets up a number of things. When scout says that the town had nothing to fear but fear itself she is referring to a quote from FDR. That sets up when this book takes place: the 1930s. Another thing this sets up is the mood of the town. Scout describes it as a calm slow place. This could cause a few things. It could show a constant theme of the mundanity of this town or (since I know what the plot of ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ is) it will cause a problem to seem even more out-of-nowhere than it would normally.

    Reply
    1. Zoe

      Your paragraph was really good, especially how you pointed out the author’s connection with this fictional story to the real events of the past. You analyzed the quotes very well and definitely pointed out things I hadn’t thought about for that paragraph. Also, I agree it sets up the mood for the village but instead of a problem occurring because of it, it seemed like the village was secluded or separated from the rest of the world for a reason. It felt like the passage was making a statement about how even though the village is slow and quiet, things still occur and many things have happened within the town.

      Reply
  23. Zoe

    “When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow. When it healed, and Jem’s fears of never being able to play football were assuaged, he was seldom self-conscious about his injury. His left arm was somewhat shorter than his right; when he stood or walked, the back of his hand
    was at right angles to his body, his thumb parallel to his thigh. He couldn’t have cared less, so long as he could pass and punt.”

    This paragraph seemed very important to the story because it really sets up the whole story by connecting a past part of the village to a distant memory of Scout. It sets up the story so that the narrator can tell the events leading up to the story. It also connects the story to more of a story-telling session instead of a book. It definitely holds an important part of the story by setting up the book’s purpose of the story which makes me think that all the events within the story will lead up to this event.

    Reply

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