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to kill a mockingbird

Examine events from the beginning, the middle and the end of the novel that illustrate growth and maturity in Jem's character. This is on the novel To...


Since To Kill a Mockingbird encompasses nearly three years, both Jem and Scout become older and wiser during the course of the book. He is nearly 10 when the novel opens, and he quickly becomes absorbed with the idea of drawing Boo Radley out into the open. But when he begins to receive gifts from Boo and then has his lost pants mysteriously mended, he comes to realize that Boo is not the ghoul he has assumed. He eventually heeds Atticus' advice and stops tormenting his unseen neighbor. His time spent with old Mrs. Dubose also teaches him that outside appearances are not always what they seem

When he turns 12 at the beginning of Part Two, Jem experiences growing pains--the onset of puberty. He becomes "difficult to live with" and moody, and he discovers hair growing under his arms. He also finds less time to spend with his sister. Witnessing the trial of Tom Robinson turns Jem bitter about the realities of life in his little Southern town. He sees that the jury fails to carry out their duty, and tells his father that "It ain't right, Atticus... How could they do it, how could they?"

By the Halloween pageant, Jem has grown into a protective big brother, escorting Scout to the school and then defending her when they are attacked by Bob Ewell. He reacts like a man--not a boy--when he screams "Run, Scout! Run! Run!" and then fights with Ewell in order to allow her to escape. He earns his badge of honor--a crooked, broken arm--and his sister's lifelong admiration.

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