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Growing Up To Kill A Mocking Bird By Harper Lee

871 words - 4 pages

Do people ever really grow up? In all sincerity, do they ever truly grow up, or do they only grow older. Nonetheless, it is a very difficult task, growing up. Most of the time, no one ever really wants to until they are absolutely forced to. Well, that is what happened to Jem Finch. Who is Jem Finch? He is a very prominent character in a very prominent book: To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee. Harper Lee does an exemplary job of displaying different character dynamics, like growing up (of course), through many of her younger characters, and especially through Jem Finch; although one may argue he seemed to change at a rather exaggerated pace in the book, it is quite evident that he still ...view middle of the document...

This incident, among several others in the book, displays a significant change in the kind of person Jem is. Not only does he learn to put others before himself, he also learns how to be benignant towards his sister even if he did not completely understand her feelings. This is perhaps the purest form of sympathy one could hope to find in a child; especially, in a child like Jem.
Acceptance of others is another trait that is incredibly difficult to find in a child like Jem, especially when one takes into consideration the type of people he grew up with; nonetheless, this change in Jem is still realized through different, more conducive influences. Before, although he had been raised by the unprejudiced man that Atticus is, Jem was very sectarian of people at times. Early on in the book, Jem had the horrid task of reading to Mrs. Dubose, the cantankerous old lady down the street who was coming off of her morphine addiction. Instead of enduring the burden of comforting her, however, Jem had something else to say: “...she’s so nasty. She has fits or somethin’. She spits a lot” (123). His reaction at the time goes forth to show how intolerant and unaccepting he used to be. Subsequently, however, his mindset about Mrs. Dubose changes. Instead of arguing with her or being disgusted by her, Jem simply let her rude words and appalling behavior flow over him like water over a stone. As Scout puts it, Jem’s chin...

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