• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How Does Harper Lee Present the Characters of Scout, Dill and Jem to show what they learn throughout the novel?

Extracts from this document...


How Does Harper Lee Present the Characters of Scout, Dill and Jem to show what they learn throughout the novel? In the novel 'To Kill a Mockingbird', the author Harper Lee presents the main characters in such a way that we can see what they learn. In this essay I will concentrate on the characters of Scout, Dill and Jem and show how they are presented. The character of Scout makes up the narration, therefore we learn about the people and society from this young girl's view. Usually, this would mean that there would be a bias view on issues, but Harper Lee dealt with this very well. As Scout is a young girl, she has not yet been affected by the prejudice in the Maycomb society. The child innocence of this character makes the reader see the novel in complete veracity. Her childhood innocence is displayed when she 'sweet-talked' Mr. Cunningham, creating guilt and sympathy. At the start of the novel, we can see the childish behaviour in her as she persistently disturbs the Radley Place. We know that she has matured towards the end of the novel as Scout herself says 'the Radley place had ceased to terrify me'. ...read more.


He is from a different area and because of this we have a contrast in beliefs. Like Scout he is immature at the start of the novel, after all he gave them 'the idea of making Boo Radley come out'. However, we see that he has dependence when he runs away. He was able to travel many miles to meet Jem and Scout and I would interpret this as maturity. Dill has also yet to be affected by the prejudice in societies. I think that the main thing that Dill learnt throughout the novel is to tell the truth. The example that I feel shows this the clearest is when he is talking about his father. When he writes he says that his new father was very kind and that 'they planned to build a fishing boat'. It was not long later when he admitted that 'they just weren't interested in me'. Dill had grown up and realised that telling the truth is the more mature thing to do. Dill also learns a great deal from Dolphus Raymond. All of the children learn about the society when he has to use drinking as a fa�ade to give society a reason for his allegedly incorrect lifestyle. ...read more.


We know that he does not realise the true ferociousness of the society. The indication of this from which I make this assumption on is on his optimism that Tom Robinson will be found innocent. After listening to the witnesses at the court case, he clearly says 'we've won it'. I believe that by living with Calpurnia and his visits to her church have blinded him from the true reality of the racist society. Similar to Dill he notifies the inequity of the decision has he tells Atticus that 'it ain't right'. The comment that really sums up all of the characters innocence is when Atticus states that 'so far nothing in your life has interfered with your reasoning process'. Atticus is saying that because they are young, the injustices of society have not affected them. Due to this the reader is able to trust the characters of Jem, Dill and in particular Scout to get very clear images of people and society. A fantastic writing technique. Scout has learnt to be dignified, Dill to tell the truth and Jem to stand by his morals. These three characters have been injected into the novel so not only they learn, but so does the reader, creating interest and making the novel more enjoyable to read. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Harper Lee section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Harper Lee essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    In this essay I will be exploring Jem and Scout's journey to maturity throughout ...

    5 star(s)

    Jem and Scout find it an experience which teaches them about right and wrong and racism. When Tom Robinson is found guilty they are really upset and cry at the unfair verdict. They know Tom is innocent but the society they live in will make sure he is found guilty.

  2. Scout's Maturity

    Scout's character is very interesting and believable because she can put awareness into words she is also not a smart aleck because of her humor, mistakes and understandings from a child's perspective. This is a true show of her maturity because she can understand much of the things adults do.

  1. How effectively does Harper Lee convey her ideas about prejudice in her novel To ...

    out about the family history, and because everyone in Maycomb County is grouped into a category. People decided to take the responsibility of adding details to Boo Radley to their knowledge of him (bad teenage childhood and apparently that he stabbed his Fathers' leg with a pair of scissors).

  2. To Kill a Mockingbird Jem, Scout and Dill are all young people who learn ...

    This certainly portrays to the reader her respect for the fact that people have different ways of life and also that it is important not to listen to rumours and gossip, as it is unreliable and unfair. Scout also learns her lessons from minor characters in the novel, including Miss Maudie, Calpurnia, Boo Radley and others.

  1. What do we learn about Maycomb society in Harper Lee's; To Kill a Mockingbird?

    and it seems as though once a person has a reputation, it remains. An example of this is: "but they were Haverfords, in Maycomb county a name synonymous with jackass8", thus showing that once you had a reputation then it became: "synonymous" with your name.

  2. How does Scout and Jem mature during the novel?

    She turns away from Cecil Jacobs' taunts because "if I fought Cecil, I would let Atticus down". This shows that she respects Atticus and remembers what Atticus has taught her to do "hold your head high and keep those fists down."

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work