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What does Jem learn when he runs up to the Radleys' house and touches it?

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justin-crouch | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 21, 2009 at 12:01 AM via web

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What does Jem learn when he runs up to the Radleys' house and touches it?

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kkosach | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Adjunct Educator

Posted August 21, 2009 at 5:28 AM (Answer #1)

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Jem thinks he hears someone laughing inside the house when he is dared to touch it.  There is no indication that the laughter is sadistic - in fact, whoever is laughing seems to be amused. Jem doesn't seem scared when he reports this incident to Scout and Dill. Assuming that Boo Radley laughs, it  makes sense that Boo,who has been watching the kids for some time, finds them entertaining.  If Boo did not like the kids, there would not have been multiple presents, and later, the saving of their lives.

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dsgrabek | High School Teacher | eNoter

Posted August 21, 2009 at 6:26 AM (Answer #2)

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Jem wanted to prove to Dill that the people in his county were not more afraid of doing things on a dare than the people from Dill's county. After they touched the house and were safe on their porch, they looked at Radley's house and nothing had changed. The "phantom" they had believed lived there, was of their own fantastic imaginations.

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