To Kill a Mockingbird

What are Aunt Alexandra's ideas of family? What makes them important? What shapes their identity? How does this relate to the theme of identity (do children become their parents)?

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Aunt Alexandra defines families by bloodlines. You have a good bloodline...... or a not so good bloodline, which for her is based upon social class and breeding. Thus, identity is based upon family heritageand respect...... family name. As far as the theme of identity, some children turn out like their parents..... other don't. An example; Atticus and his sister.

Aunt Alexandra was Atticus’s sister, but when Jem told me about changelings and siblings, I decided that she had been swapped at birth, that my grandparents had perhaps received a Crawford instead of a Finch.

I never understood her preoccupation with heredity. Somewhere, I had received the impression that Fine Folks were people who did the best they could with the sense they had, but Aunt Alexandra was of the opinion, obliquely expressed, that the longer a family had been squatting on one patch of land the finer it was.

“Your aunt has asked me to try and impress upon you and Jean Louise that you are not from run-of-the-mill people, that you are the product of several generations’ gentle breeding—” Atticus paused, watching me locate an elusive redbug on my leg.


To Kill a Mockingbird