To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

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As Scout waits for the verdict, she thinks of earlier events. What are these and how do they remind us of the novel's earlier themes?

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After the three children have been discovered in the courtroom, they convince Atticus to let them stay for the final verdict of the Tom Robinson trial--after they have returned for supper with Calpurnia. Upon their return, Jem expresses his confidence about an acquittal, but Reverend Sykes expesses doubt. "I ain't ever seen any jury decide in favor of a colored man over a white man." Jem, Scout and Dill then begin their own vigil.

Scout observes Atticus wandering the courtroom and realizes that things don't seem normal. "I had never seen a packed courtroom so still." After more than a four hour wait, she takes a short nap herself. When she awakes, in typical Maycomb style, nothing has changed; the sleepy crowd accurately represents the town: nothing else important is happening, there is nowhere else to go.

Scout remembers one of Jem's "psychical" gems: if enough people were to concentrate on one thing, the power of positive thinking would surely cause that thing to occur.

I toyed with the idea of asking everyone below to concentrate on setting Tom Robinson free, but thought if they were as tired as I, it wouldn't work.

ThenĀ another thought crept upon her. It was like one she had had the previous winter, and she shivered even though the courtroom was hot. The stuffy courtroom reminded her of a cold February morning when all the mockingbirds were still.

A deserted waiting empty street, and the courtroom was packed with people. A steamy summer night was no different from a winter morning.

The above refers to the day Atticus killed the mad dog in the street. Things would be no different here. Scout has a premonition that this great change that they hope for--Tom's acquittal--will still...

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