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In To Kill a Mockingbird, what secret does Jem reveal to Scout about what happened the...

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a7lagmr | Student, College Freshman | (Level 1) Honors

Posted September 27, 2008 at 8:10 AM via web

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In To Kill a Mockingbird, what secret does Jem reveal to Scout about what happened the night he went back to the Radley place for his pants?

 

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ms-mcgregor | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted September 27, 2008 at 8:58 AM (Answer #1)

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Jem takes his time before he tells his sister that his pants were mended when he went back to get them. By taking his time before telling his sister, he is showing that he is growing up. He is taking time to think about things that happen to him and trying to put them into perspective. Scout notices this change in Jem and says, “It was then, I suppose, that Jem and I first begin to part company.”

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huggybearr17 | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 23, 2009 at 11:39 AM (Answer #2)

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he tells her some one had stuched his pants and neatly hung them on the gate. (boo)

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fatty123 | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted April 24, 2009 at 1:23 AM (Answer #3)

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he said he met his pants folded back like someone was expecting him

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shavuntae | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted September 28, 2009 at 7:04 AM (Answer #4)

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he tells her that when he went back to get his pants from the Duradleys place that they were folded by the gate and the rip in the pants were fixed.

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readerofbooks | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 7, 2015 at 12:53 PM (Answer #6)

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There are many secrets that Jem reveals to Scout on the night of the fire. He also reveals them to Atticus. It is interesting that it takes so long for Jem to share his thoughts. The implication is that Jem was mulling things over in his mind. When he came to certain conclusions, he finally shared them, or perhaps when he could hold things in no longer. 

Jem seemed to have lost his mind. He began pouring out our secrets right and left in total disregard for my safety if not for his own, omitting nothing, knot-hole, pants and all.

“...Mr. Nathan put cement in that tree, Atticus, an‘ he did it to stop us findin’ things—he’s crazy, I reckon, like they say, but Atticus, I swear to God he ain’t ever harmed us, he ain’t ever hurt us, he coulda cut my throat from ear to ear that night but he tried to mend my pants instead... he ain’t ever hurt us, Atticus—”

Atticus said, “Whoa, son,” so gently that I was greatly heartened. It was obvious that he had not followed a word Jem said, for all Atticus said was, “You’re right. We’d better keep this and the blanket to ourselves. Someday, maybe, Scout can thank him for covering her up.”

From this long quotation, we can learn a few things. First, Jem is certainly maturing. He is beyond his childish ways. Second, Jem is developing a moral compass, like his father. In the beginning he would poke fun at the Radleys and Boo, but he realizes that this is wrong. Moreover, he realizes that Boo is a good person who is misunderstood. 

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