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Essay about Transition From Childhood to Maturity: Good and Evil

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In the book, To Kill a Mockingbird, many themes are discussed throughout the story. The most significant theme is how over the course of the story, Jem and Scout slowly mature after specific events, and realize the reality of good and evil. Along the way, they meet Tom Robinson, a black man who is convicted of raping a white girl, who plays a major role in the story. Mrs. Dubose, a senile grumpy woman, shows what “real courage” is. Arthur Radley, known as Boo, is a recluse who is said to have tried to kill his father. As the events unfold, Jem and Scout are hit with the reality of racism and social inequality, but most of all, how good and evil play a role in people’s minds, and hearts.
Our first major character is Boo Radley, who is first introduced as Scout and Jem walk past the Radley house every day after school. Jem, Scout, and Dill are fascinated with the chilly stories of Boo’s past, spending many summers acting out his life and imagining what he is like. As the story progresses, the children come to realize that Boo was in fact an intelligent child, but was poorly treated by his “foot-washing Baptist” father, resulting in mental problems at a very young age. Boo Radley is one of the eponymous “mockingbirds” of the book, the other being Tom Robinson. Mockingbirds, as explained in the book by Atticus, “don't do one thing but make music for us to enjoy... but sing their hearts out for us. That is why it is a sin to kill a mockingbird." (90) The analogy holds true for Boo, a young boy damaged by his father’s ambitions, and is partially the reason he has shied away from society. He is already experienced the harmful effects of a racist/judgmental culture and realizes how evil society is. Towards the end of the book, Scout ...


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...y losing his innocence after realizing how racist the world really is. Mr. Raymond reveals to them that racism is a really bad thing, and that society would shun him if they knew he wasn’t a drunkard and simply preferred Negroes over white people
Throughout the story, Jem and Scout experience different people, and grow up in the process, differentiating from the good and the bad. A major character in the lives of the children was Tom Robinson, who was found guilty for no apparent reason. Mrs. Dubose acted very intolerant towards the children, but in the end Jem learned some things very valuable from her. Boo Radley, our “mockingbird”, is revealed to be one of the good guys, like a silent savior. The children learn their lessons, as it can be seen when Scout acts like a lady when Jem is being a teenager, when Dill loses his innocence, and when Jem hits adolescence.


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