Positive Influence In To Kill A Mockingbird

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Everyone has heard “the apple does not fall far from the tree.” This phrase means that kids tend to resemble their parents, specifically their characteristics and morals, and this is no coincidence. Parents act as a model to their children -- through their actions, advice, and views. Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird represents this idea perfectly. The author uses her best-selling book to show that children gain their ideas and insights directly from their parents, showing several situations and instances in which parents encourage their children to follow their ideas. In To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee proposes the idea that the development of a child’s values depends solely upon the influence of his or her parents, as is demonstrated through Mr. Ewell’s reprehensible impact on Mayella and Atticus’s exemplary effect on Jem and Scout. While we see demonstrations of positive influence, negative influences are also present in the novel. The Ewells pose adverse evidence -- Bob largely affects Mayella’s views in a negative way. Mayella develops her ideas from her father, though this proves to give her a disadvantage. First of all, at the beginning of the trial, Atticus asks Mr. Ewell “‘Didn’t you think [Mayella] should have had a doctor, immediately?’ The witness said he never thought of it, he had never called a doctor to any of his’n in his life, and if he had it would have cost him five dollars” (175). Mr. Ewell did not think of the well-being of his own children.
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