What sort of person is Dolphus Raymond in To Kill a Mockingbird? (Chapter 16)
7 Answers | Add Yours
Dolphus Raymond is one of Harper Lee's white characters in To Kill A Mockingbird. He drinks from a bottle covered by a paper bag to give the impression to fellow white southerners that he is a drunk, a morally weak man. However, as Dill discovers when he takes a sip, the man actually drinks coca-cola from the bag. His purpose for appearing to be a drunk is to excuse himself in the eyes of his white peers for being married to a black woman and fathering racially mixed children. In the time period of the novel, nothing could have been lower than a white man openly consorting with a black woman. Actually, he is simply a white man who has been beaten down by life, losing his wife years earlier, and he is too weak to stand up for his beliefs on race.
If you are only to chapter 16, you only know half of Dolphus Raymond's story. He seems to be a person who is on the lower-edge of society, in the eyes of most Maycomb-ites. He is a wealthy man--he owns a lot of land by the river. However, his first wife killed herself and the town blames that for Dolphus' constant state of drunkenness. They also blame his lifestyle of being drunk--he lives with the black folks, and has mixed children with a black woman. Jem notices Dolphus going to town during the trial and tells this information to Scout, saying that Dolphus can't even sit up straight in his saddle.
However, there is more to Dolphus Raymond and the children learn this during the trial.
He has "in-between children" with a black person. He is often drunk, and (according to Jem) drinks whiskey from a coca-cola bottle in a paper bag so he doesn't upset the ladies. His first wife shot herself in the head on the rehearsal wedding day, when she found out that he had children with a black person. Dolphus figured he could get married and still see his black woman (IDK her name at the moment).
He first presents himself to be a drunk because he hides his whiskey in a paper bag so he doesn’t "upset the ladies". He likes the Black community more than he likes the white. And Jem also says that he is very good to his children.
He acts like he is drunk but in reality he is drinking some coca cola from his bottle. His wife died year ago and he has a racially mixed child. Back in those days it was bad to "mix races" and since many people were racist, they looked down upon those who were nice to the African Americans. He is stuck in a hole where he can neither be normal and life his life, nor conform to the evils of society. He is simply a man beaten by life.
Dolphus Raymond is a Mockingbird in the book.In the book, mockingbirds are defined as the people who cannot live their life the way they want to because of society.Dolphus Raymond's children are neither black nor white and thus are rejected by both sides of society.Dolphus Raymond does not want to adhere to society and thus acts as if he is taking drugs while he is actually only drinking cola,he does this to be alone and isolated from society so that he can live his life the way he wants it.
it is the book
Join to answer this question
Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.Join eNotes