How does the catastrophe of the Great Depression affect the actions of Walter Cunningham Sr.?

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In chapter 2 of To Kill a Mockingbird, readers learn than Walter Cunningham Sr. is a country farmer, and Atticus tells his children that "the crash hit them the hardest." Readers also learn that the Cunninghams have very little cash because of mortgage interest they have to pay on their farm land. Their land is also entailed, which means it will be inherited by the oldest male child—provided Walter Cunningham Sr. maintains ownership of the property. Though Mr. Cunningham could qualify for a government-sponsored job, he would then have no one to farm his land. Readers are told that he comes from "a set breed of men." He prefers "to go hungry to keep his land and vote as he pleased."

Thus he sends his son, Walter Jr., to school with no shoes, no lunch, and no money to buy lunch. The boy, like his father, refuses to accept a loan from the teacher because he knows he cannot pay the money back, at least in kind. Likewise, when Walter Sr. needs legal services from Atticus, an attorney, he pays...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 621 words.)

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