Does Miss Maudie think it is an accident that Atticus was apponited by the judge to defend Tom Robinson?

Asked on by mookiesin

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readerofbooks's profile pic

readerofbooks | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

After Tom Robinson was give a verdict of guilty, Jem (and the other children) took it hard. Jem took it the hardest. In fact, he could not get over the injustice of the whole trial. In his low point of sorrow, Miss Maudie tried to give him another perspective. She tried to show that Jem was not alone in thinking that the trial was a farce. More importantly, there were good people in the town that were seeking to do the right thing. In a conversation with Jem, Miss Maudie pointed out a few considerations:

Stop eating and start thinking, Jem. Did it ever strike you that Judge Taylor naming Atticus to defend that boy was no accident? That Judge Taylor might have had his reasons for naming him?”

The point that Miss Maudie is making is that even though Atticus lost the trial, Maycomb has good people. There were no accidents here. Good people were trying to set the citizens of Maycomb on a more righteous path.  In light of this, Miss Maudie is trying to give Jem some hope. 

alanrice's profile pic

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

Posted on

If I may add to that, Miss Maudie specifically states that Judge Taylor's choice was deliberate. Ordinarily a case like this would have been defended by the beginning lawyer Maxwell Green. Miss Maudie tells Jem, "Did it ever strike you that Judge Taylor naming Atticus to defend that boy was no accident? . . . You think about it. It was no accident." (215-16)

sullymonster's profile pic

sullymonster | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Certainly not. Miss Maudie, an intelligent and savvy woman, knows (as most of the adult in the town know) that Atticus is the only logical choice. He is unbiased, he is compassionate, he is intelligent, and he knows the best way to approach the case. Here is one quote from her on the subject:

'Whether Maycomb knows it or not, we're paying the highest tribute we can pay a man. We trust him to do right. It's that simple.'


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