What are three quotes that shows Atticus Finch's empathy in To Kill a Mockingbird?

2 Answers | Add Yours

bullgatortail's profile pic

bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted on


The Ewells.  After Bob Ewell spits in Atticus's face and threatens to get even with him, Atticus explains that it's one of those moments when Jem needs to step into Bob's skin to understand his motives better. Atticus is happy to have served as a human spittoon for Bob if it meant protecting the Ewell children from their father.

"So if spitting in my face and threatening me saved Mayella Ewell one extra beating, that's something I'll gladly take. He had to take it out on somebody, and I'd rather it be me than that household of children out there."  (Chapter 23)

Maycomb's Negroes.  There are many examples of Atticus showing empathy toward the town's African American population, perhaps none better than the day after the trial. When Atticus awakes, he finds his kitchen table covered with "enough food to bury the family." It has come from the friends of Tom Robinson, showing their appreciation for Atticus's staunch defense. But Atticus realizes that such a display is a financial hardship for Tom's poor friends.

     Atticus's eyes filled with tears. He did not speak for a moment. "Tell them I'm very grateful," he said. "Tell them--tell them they must never do it again. Times are too hard..."  (Chapter 23)

Cheating a Black Man.  To Atticus, cheating a black man is the worst thing a white man can do.

"There's nothing more sickening to me than a low-grade white man who'll take advantage of a Negro's ignorance... whenever a white man does that to a black man... the white man is trash." (Chapter 23)

carolynrehm's profile pic

carolynrehm | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted on

"You never really understand a person until you consider things from their point of view.. until you climb inside it and walk around in it."

"There's a lot of ugly things in this world, son. I wish I could keep 'em all away from you. That's never possible."

"I have nothing but pity in my heart for the chief witness for the state. She is the victim of cruel poverty and ignorance."

We’ve answered 317,678 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question