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Comment on the way Scout affects events without realizing it at the time in To Kill a...

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juliamnl | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 30, 2008 at 1:57 AM via web

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Comment on the way Scout affects events without realizing it at the time in To Kill a Mockingbird.

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juliamnl | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 30, 2008 at 2:56 AM (Answer #1)

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i 4got to mention that the question is about chapter 15

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leagye | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

Posted March 30, 2008 at 3:02 AM (Answer #2)

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In Chapter 15, Scout has a profound effect on the townspeople who confront Atticus in front of the jail, where he is protecting Tom Robinson from just this type of anticipated confrontation. Scout, without even understanding the consequences, happens to notice Walter Cunningham in the crowd, and mentions to him that she is a classmate of his son. Re-read this passage and think about the immediate result of Scout's greeting and brief conversation with Mr. Cunningham. What does the crowd do next?

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amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted March 30, 2008 at 11:30 AM (Answer #3)

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Scout turns the crowd away by addressing Mr. Cunningham directly and speaking about his son, Walter.  She connects with him through his son and speaks about what a good person Walter is...she continues to speak about how Atticus has helped them (the Cunninghams) and how Atticus always talks about how important it is to help others and to be good people.  This effects Mr. Cunningham because it makes him consider the reasons they are there at the jail.  He rethinks those reasons and "calls off the dogs" so to speak.  He addresses the mob and tells them to go home, while telling Scout that he will definitely tell Walter she said, "hello".

Go back and read this part of the chapter to see if you can pick up on how the tension melts away in this scene and what Scout says.  She does this more to ease her own discomfort than to change the mood of the crowd, but Atticus understands how it is effecting the men so he allows her to continue talking.

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