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IN Chapter 12 of "To Kill a Mockingbird," the reader gains new insight into the depth of Calpurnia as she takes Scout and Jem with her to her church. When one of the members of the church asks with contempt, I wants to know why you bringin' white chillun to nigger church." Calpurnia replies in a dialect common to the others: "They's my comp'ny."
A murmur runs through the congregation, and Calpurnia whispers to Scout. When one of the women confronts Calpurnia, she halts the woman. With this remark said, Calpurnia smiles, and the others welcome the children. Later, Calpurnia checks Scout when she questions why Mrs. Robinson cannot find work. This experience teaches the children a new respect for Calpurnia.
Chapter 15 is demonstrative of the development of Jem and Scout as they display their loyalty and quick-thinking. When a group of men come to the Finch house. When Atticus adamantly tells the men that Tom Robinson will not be moved from the jail, there is a
murmur among the group of men, made more ominous when Atticus moved back to the bottom front step and the men drew nearer to him.
Quickly, Jem reacts to diffuse the situation: "Atticus, the telephone's ringing!" The men start and scatter. When Atticus tells Jem to answer the phone, the men laugh, and the laughter diffuses the tension. Atticus returns to the house, saved by Jem's mature reaction.
When the mob appears later at the jail, smelling of stale whiskey. Scout looks around at the crowd, feeling the tension as she looks from man to man, men whose sleeves are unrolled and hats pulled way down upon their faces. Scout searches for a familiar face and finds Mr. Cunningham:
'Hey, Mr. Cunningham. How's your entailment gettin' along?
Uncomfortable at having been recognized, Mr. Cunningham encourages the other men to depart. The other man stare at Scout agape as she continues talking to Mr. Cunningham. Finally, Mr. Cunningham bends down and talks to Scout. Standing, he waves his large hand. "Let's clear out....Let's get going, boys." Scout, too, diffuses a very tense situation through her remembrance of Atticus's talking to reluctant people. As the children accompany home, Atticus gives Jem an affectionate head rub, a rub of pride, too.
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