What are some traits of Boo Radley in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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Arthur "Boo" Radley is depicted as a reclusive, compassionate man who remains inside his dilapidated home against his will and eventually rescues Jem and Scout from Bob Ewell toward the end of the novel. At the beginning of the story, Scout recalls the rumors surrounding Boo Radley 's adolescence and...

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Arthur "Boo" Radley is depicted as a reclusive, compassionate man who remains inside his dilapidated home against his will and eventually rescues Jem and Scout from Bob Ewell toward the end of the novel. At the beginning of the story, Scout recalls the rumors surrounding Boo Radley's adolescence and mentions that he got into trouble while hanging out with the Cunningham boys. Unfortunately, Boo Radley and the Cunningham boys were arrested for harassing a town constable, and Boo's severe father proceeded to lock him inside the house as punishment. Given Boo's willingness to participate in risky pranks with the Cunningham boys, one could argue that he was an impressionable, immature adolescent.

As the story progresses, Boo Radley attempts to communicate with the Finch children by leaving them small gifts in the knothole of the oak tree. Boo's gifts and attempt to form a friendship with the Finch children portray him as a kind, benevolent neighbor. Unfortunately, Nathan Radley pours cement in the knothole to prevent him from communicating with Jem and Scout. The fact that Boo cannot express himself or challenge his brother depicts him as a timid, powerless individual. Despite Boo's lack of independence and unfortunate home life, he demonstrates selflessness and courage by defending the children against Bob Ewell. Boo Radley protects the Finch children and ends up killing Bob Ewell using a kitchen knife. However, Boo Radley relies on Sheriff Tate to protect him from the community's limelight, which portrays him as a defenseless, vulnerable character. Overall, Boo Radley is a symbolic mockingbird who is innocent, benevolent, and defenseless.

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