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What is Ms. Rachel's attitude toward Atticus defending Tom Robinson?

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babyblilie23 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 9, 2010 at 9:08 AM via web

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What is Ms. Rachel's attitude toward Atticus defending Tom Robinson?

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cldbentley | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted December 10, 2010 at 1:51 AM (Answer #1)

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In Chapter 22 of To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus Finch assures his children, Scout and Jem, that he has not yet given up on Tom Robinson, who was found guilty of rape the evening before.  As he informs them that he will appeal on Robinson's behalf, he is sidetracked by the unusual breakfast Calpurnia serves him, which includes chicken.  The black community shows their appreciation for Atticus's work by sending him food, since they are unable to afford to show their gratitude in other ways.  Atticus is truly touched by the gifts he receives, especially knowing that those families must have sacrificed in order to thank him. 

Atticus leaves in the middle of his breakfast, but Dill takes his place and enjoys devouring Atticus's leftovers.  As he eats, Dill tells the Finch children his aunt's opinion of Atticus's efforts.

"...which was:  if a man like Atticus Finch wants to butt his head against a stone wall it's his head." 

Clearly, Rachel believes that Atticus has a right to do as he chooses, but that his efforts will go in vain.

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monassar19 | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 2) eNoter

Posted December 10, 2010 at 5:16 AM (Answer #2)

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In Chapter 22 of To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus Finch assures his children, Scout and Jem, that he has not yet given up on Tom Robinson, who was found guilty of rape the evening before.  As he informs them that he will appeal on Robinson's behalf, he is sidetracked by the unusual breakfast Calpurnia serves him, which includes chicken.  The black community shows their appreciation for Atticus's work by sending him food, since they are unable to afford to show their gratitude in other ways.  Atticus is truly touched by the gifts he receives, especially knowing that those families must have sacrificed in order to thank him.

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