Jeremy “Jem” Finch is a leading protagonist in Harper Lee’s novel “To Kill a Mocking Bird” published in 1960. Jem matured greatly throughout the duration of the book, starting to resemble and idolize his father, achieves the status of a guardian to his sister and introduces a whole new set
Over the course of the novel, the reader watches Jem mature from age 10 to age 13, growing up from a brave and playful boy, to a calm, collected young man similar to the likes of his father Atticus. One of the most important life lessons that Atticus teaches Jem is to always do the right thing even if it’s the hardest thing to do. Atticus Finch is known as a man who is “the same in his house as he is on the public streets.” (Lee, pg. 61) He lived by morals, and always abade by them. After Atticus took up the court case of Tom Robinson, a coloured man, he had many people insult him and make fun of him. Atticus knew that he couldn’t refuse the case, as he stated “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.”(Lee, pg.140) Atticus took the job that no person wanted, especially knowing that he was going to lose the case before it even began. In doing so, Atticus shows Jem that you should always be a man of your morals, that you should always do the right thing even if it is the hardest thing to do. Although he has a hard time understanding Atticus’ actions at first, Jem begins to comprehend his father’s values in the world around him, with more mature eyes.
He constantly makes or doesn’t make certain decisions in the hopes that his connection to others will remain as good as possible. He doesn’t perform a single action without thinking about how it makes others feel or the impression he gives about himself. The best example of this is the relationship he has with his father. Regarding the night that Jem’s curiosity drove him to sneak behind the Radley house, Scout wants to inform their father of the events that occurred. In response, Jem says, “‘I—it’s like this, Scout,’ he muttered. “Atticus ain’t ever whipped me since I can remember. I wanta keep it that way’” (Lee 75). Here, Jem shows his driving ambition to be seen as an admirable son in the eyes of his father. While this choice may also present a sense of dishonesty, it is later shown that Jem regretted disturbing the Radley home in the first place when he says, “‘I think I’m beginning to understand why Boo Radley stayed shut up in the house all this time… it’s because he wants to stay inside’” (Lee 304). So, even though he’s concerned with the way that others think of him, the way he accomplishes this is to make changes to himself for the better. This is shown during the trial as well. When Jem supports Tom Robinson, whether it is for the approval of his father, the black community, or even himself, the motive doesn’t necessarily matter, so long as he actually
Jem Finch is a character who is prominent in the development of the story yet is not the main character. He is there while Scout grows up, changing rapidly throughout their experiences. Jem closely resembles his father in attitude after he learns how unfair life can really be (in the
Throughout To Kill a Mockingbird Jem Finch shows us innocence, curiosity, and courage. Jem Finch showed innocence after the Tom Robinson trial, he showed curiosity when they went to go see Boo Radley, and he showed us courage at the jail the night before the trial. Jem Finch was the one that made me want to actually read this book, I was always interested in what his curiosity would drive him to do next. Jem is one of the main characters of the book and I fell in love with him throughout the
During the process of the trial, Jem experiences his coming of age and lost innocence moment by opening his eyes to the racism he is constantly surrounded by. When Tom Robinson lost the trial, Jem instantly matured and realized how racism in Maycomb was the only reason Tom lost. After Tom was declared guilty, the kids walked with Atticus, “It was Jem’s turn to cry. His face was streaked with angry tears as we made our way through the cheerful crowd. ‘It ain’t right’” (Lee, 1960, p. 284). Throughout the entirety of the trial, Jem was blinded by his innocence and thought there was no possible way that Tom could lose the trial. It was the moment when the jury declared Tom Robinson guilty that Jem lost his innocence and started opening his eyes to the world. This quote illustrates how frustrated Jem was by the unfairness of the trial. Jem now understands the only reason Tom Robinson lost the trial was because of his skin color. Due to his young age, he had not yet succumb to the disease of Maycomb and realized racism is not right. Furthermore, when Tom Robinson lost the trial, Jem’s perspective of Maycomb changed Jem is left to understand the reality of people’s biased opinions. When talking to Miss Maudie, Jem described to her, “‘It’s like bein’ a caterpillar in a
The author’s use of Jem shows how innocence can be crushed by the ignorance of the judges of Maycomb. During the trial of Tom Robinson, Jem was very confident that his father, Atticus Finch, would win the trial. But when the judges came back to reveal who had won, Jem was shocked. “Judge Taylor was polling the Jury: Guilty… Guilty… Guilty… Guilty…, I (Scout) peeked at Jem: His hands were white from gripping the balcony rail, and his shoulders jerked as if each “guilty” was a separate stab between them.”(Lee 178) This relates back to the thesis because
It’s not until more than halfway through the plot that Jem realizes the legitimate importance of his father's actions in both of their lives. An event that Scout remembers quite vividly is the Tim Johnson incident. When they saw Tim Johnson, Heck Tate and Atticus were discussing who would take the shot, and Heck Tate made the final argument that Atticus has the better shot out of the two of them. It is important that is only takes one shot to wipe out Tom Johnson, because if he does not go down with one shot, the do not know how he will react. Heck Tate shortly exclaimed, “Mr. Finch, this is a one-shot job. … I can’t shoot that well and you know it! Mr. Heck Tate almost threw the rifle at Atticus. I’d feel mighty comfortable if you did it now” (Lee 127). Heck Tate was really trying to get Atticus to take the shot, even though Atticus was reluctant about it. It then occurred to Atticus that they dog needs to be taken care of, for everyone’s safety. This took an immense amount of courage from Atticus. This also shows how Atticus is civilized at heart. He did not shoot the dog until he had too, which you can not say the same about many of the townspeople in Maycomb. Atticus had the courage to do something no one else wanted to do, while risking himself at the same
The book To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is about how good and evil can co-exist in the world. The two main characters in the novel are Jean Louise “Scout” Finch and Jeremy Atticus “Jem” Finch who lives in the small town called Maycomb located in Alabama. The town Maycomb is full of people who contradict themselves. Although Jem and Scout grow up to be more mature throughout the book by realizing the things about the world, the adults in the town are still able to mature and grow also. Although they have been through many more life experiences than Jem and Scout, they still have their faults.
The Journey to Maturity Childhood innocence tends to fade as one starts to experience different aspects of life. However, maturity comes earlier for some than others as they undergo different experiences. In Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, Jem Finch sees a
The coming of age story of Scout Finch illustrates that difficulties that children face as they grow up and start to see the world around them. Scout, her brother Jem, and their friend Dill try to navigate the confusing socially intricate town of Maycomb during the 1930s. They go through
Throughout the entire trial Jem not only expects that Atticus will win, but knows it. So when Tom Robinson is convicted it takes a heavy toll on him. For example Jem is heard saying, ¨How could they do it, how could they?¨ in reference to the jury convicting Tom. This shows the amount of injustice Jem feels after watching the events at the trial unfold. This is the point in the book in which Jem finally matures and takes a step towards understanding the cruelty, prejudice, but also kindness of the world. Jem´s understanding of cruelty is gained through watching how Bob Ewell treats people, his understanding of prejudice comes through watching the entire jury convict an innocent black man, and his understanding of kindness comes through watching how people thanked his father after the trial by sending him food, regardless of the fact that he had lost. The trial is a huge step into manhood for Jem, one which he hadn't been expecting to take, and was thus unsure how to act emotionally for quite a while after the trial. This is shown quite clearly when Jem gets upset over Scout mentioning the trial and shouts, ¨I never wanta hear about that courthouse again, ever, ever, you hear? Now go on!” Atticus in reply to Scout being upset over Jem's reaction comforts her by telling her, ¨that Jem was trying hard to forget something, but what he was really doing was storing it away for a while, until enough time passed.”
Jem, Scout and Dill felt like they had to find Atticus because of his suspicious actions. That night, Atticus was carrying a long electrical extension cord and he drove the car; Atticus didn`t usually take the car because he liked to walk. They found Atticus and Scout felt like runnig
Jem Finch is an unique character in To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, through chapters four and five. We are given insight into Jem’s motivation behind his actions through the perspective of Scout and how his traits impact the novel itself. Jem possesses traits of bravery, authoritativeness, and obsessiveness.
In the Harper Lee’s novel To Kill A Mockingbird there are many events that require Jem and Scout to act more mature and grown up. One of the main events is when a black man named Tom Robinson is wrongfully accused of rape, but loses the case because of Maycomb’s prejudice people. This shows them the harsh reality of Maycomb and what people in their town are really like. Throughout the book these events force Jem and Scout to mature and become smarter in what they say and do. They learn these lessons of maturity while witnessing or being a victim in many cruel events in the unpleasant town of