In "To Kill a Mockingbird," what are the children's characteristics while playing the Boo Radley game?

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podunc eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Jem, Dill, and Scout begin to play "Boo Radley" between Scout's first- and second-grade years at school. Dill comes up with the game, and the three of them begin to act out imaginary and terrifying scenes about their mysterious neighbor. Most of their "information" about Boo comes from unreliable neighborhood gossip and town myths that have grown up around the Radley family.

It is during this game that Jem and Scout move furthest away from the social ideals of their father. They do not put themselves in Boo's shoes, something Atticus says they must do in order to treat others with dignity and compassion. Instead, they are more interested in the drama of the game. With this game, Lee compares the children's immature and reactionary behavior to the gossip and snap judgments of many adults in Maycomb.

mjush eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Jem, Dill, and Scout begin to play "Boo Radley" to act out the ideas they have surround the myth of their neighbor the evasive Boo Radley. It seems like a game but it is more then that and the children even realize this as they hide the game from their father.

This game shows a lack of respect to the neighbor and goes against their father's ideals of respect for all people. Atticus tries to instill in them respect and empathy for all and to think about others and how they feel.

In some ways, the immaturities of the kids reflect the immaturity of many adults in the town and Atticus represents a quest for something better.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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