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What do you think about Atticus' reaction to Bob Ewell's challenge in Chapter 23 of...

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nerazzurro | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted January 22, 2009 at 11:39 PM via web

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What do you think about Atticus' reaction to Bob Ewell's challenge in Chapter 23 of "To Kill a Mockingbird"?

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writergal06 | Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted January 22, 2009 at 11:55 PM (Answer #1)

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Atticus's very calm, passive response to the threat reinforces his nature as a person. He doesn't like to get worked up over nothing. He also takes the time to rationally explain why Bob is acting the way he does. Throughout the novel, Atticus tries to teach Scout and Jem the importance of "walking around in another person's shoes," and understanding where people are coming from and what motivates them. He doesn't want his children to judge people based on biases and prejudices, but rather to understand the individual and his or her situation. His reaction to Bob demonstates what he has been trying to teach his children the whole time.


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smaglione | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted January 23, 2009 at 12:56 AM (Answer #2)

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If I were to hand-pick the perfect dad, Atticus Finch would be him.  Not only does he have to raise these two children without their mother, he also is a role model for an entire town.  His most outstanding trait is courage -- that is why he is able to shrug off Bob Ewell's threats to his own person.  However, when it comes down to Bob attempting to kill his children, Atticus becomes the proverbial "mother" bear.  Atticus does understand Bob's world, however, in the gentle way he treated Bob's daughter, Mayella, at the trial.  If we were all able to emulate Atticus in his reaction to the town "bully", Bob Ewell, and shrug it off, the world would certainly be a more peaceful place.

Miss Mags

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

Posted August 25, 2011 at 9:36 PM (Answer #3)

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I dunno

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matoakagirl | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 24, 2015 at 8:00 PM (Reply #1)

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