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Maturation: Once a Child, No More in To Killing a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

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A five year old is the epitome of innocence and naiveté. But as time progresses, this fragility is lost and children must learn gradually cope with the outside world and mature via gaining new experiences that grant them wisdom and knowledge. Three characters, Jem, Scout, and Dill in the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee living during the Depression-era in Maycomb County, deal with the harsh reality of Maycomb’s racism and prejudice while maturing through gaining knowledge, experience, and courage. The kids grow up learning many lessons from Atticus or from their own experiences. In her depiction of Jem, Scout, and Dill, Lee reveals their maturation from being the children they are to having a thorough understanding of their…show more content…
He also sees that Atticus, even though he is obviously on the losing side, crusades for justice and the principles that he holds true to. Through both of these events, the author shows that Jem learns what true courage really is. Another place where Jem is shown to be mature is when the place where he found the gifts is filled up: “someone [fills their] knot-hole with cement”. This causes him lament his loss in communication with Boo by crying: “[Jem] had been crying; his face was dirty in the right places” (83-84). His action show he has overcome his childish portrayal of Boo Radley as a devilish figure into a human being with emotions. After his incident with his mysteriously folded pants, he realizes that Boo Radley is an amiable person. Before he makes wrong assumptions of Boo with Dill, he now is mature enough to understand what he actually is. Through all these experiences, Harper Lee shows Jem matures by learning about true courage and to judge people based on their actual self and not appearances.
Lee portrays Scout growth from a six year old with an ingenuous understanding of racism and other ideas to a mature eight year old through her bewilderment on Mrs. Gates hypocrisy and her understanding of an important lesson from Atticus. After Cecil Jacobs gives his presentation on Hitler persecuting the Jews, Mrs. Gates explain how in American they do not believe in persecuting anyone. Scout is perplexed so she asks Jem: “Well,
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