What are three key observations about the daily lives of the characters in To Kill a Mockingbird (including protagonist and antagonist) and their motives?My question pertains to the film To Kill...

What are three key observations about the daily lives of the characters in To Kill a Mockingbird (including protagonist and antagonist) and their motives?

My question pertains to the film To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), but if you have only read the novel, that's great too!

Asked on by meow57

1 Answer | Add Yours

bullgatortail's profile pic

bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

MAYELLA.  As the oldest female in the Ewell household, Mayella spends most of her day taking care of her younger brothers and sisters while her father, Bob, gets drunk and heads off into the nearby swamps. She has no friends, and she saves up nickels for a year so she can send the children for ice cream cones in order to assure that she will have her privacy when she invites Tom Robinson inside. Her only pleasure seems to come from tending to her geraniums.

     As Tom Robinson gave his testimony, it came to me that Mayella Ewell must have been the loneliest person in the world. She was even lonelier than Boo Radley... 

MISS MAUDIE.  Miss Maudie hates her house and hates being inside; instead, she spends most of the day gardening outside. Scout and Jem have the "free run" of Miss Maudie's yard, and they make sure not to antagonize her. But when Jem and Dill cut Scout out from their boyish activities, she seeks refuge on Maudie's porch on the hot summer evenings. To Maudie,

... time spent indoors was time wasted. She was... a chameleon lady who worked in her flower beds in an old straw hat and men's overalls, but after her five o'clock bath she would appear on the porch and reign over the street in magisterial beauty.

SCOUT.  Scout spends her days in tomboyish activities, rarely far from her brother Jem. When Dill comes to town for the summers, they become an almost inseparable threesome. When they become bored with their treehouse and their regular games, they invent the Radley Game to keep themselves amused. Thanks to Dill, the children become enamored with Boo, and they come up with the idea "to make him come out." When Dill is away, Scout is "miserable."

     The fact that I had a permanent fiance was little compensation for his absence: I had never thought about it, but summer was Dill by the fishpool smoking string, Dill's eyes alive with complicated plans to make Boo Radley emerge; summer was the swiftness with which Dill would reach up and kiss me when Jem was not looking, the longings we sometimes felt each other feel. With him, life was routine; without him, life was unbearable. 

Sources:

We’ve answered 318,982 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question