To Kill a Mockingbird

The Key Influences in Scout's and Jem's Lives 9th Grade

The course of growing up is always influenced by the people around you, since the people in your environment are vital in shaping the person you will become. Harper Lee demonstrates this reality in the classic tale To Kill a Mockingbird, through the eyes of a six year-old Scout and a ten year-old Jem in the racially-tense Southern town of Maycomb during the Great Depression. Both Scout and Jem are exposed to different influences from very important people in their lives. They encountered positive and negative influences that taught them important things about the world they live in. Each influence makes Scout and Jem expand their knowledge of their surroundings and think differently about the society they live, discovering in the process how racism and social class infect the foundation of Maycomb County.

In the novel, Atticus is perhaps the most important factor in Scout and Jem’s growth and maturity. Atticus is not only their father, but also a state legislator and lawyer who sets a fine example to his children by doing what he believes is right regardless of what everyone else thinks. He also encourages his children to follow his footsteps of doing the right thing as well. An example of this is when he was speaking with...

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