What literary devices are in chapter 22 of To Kill a Mockingbird?

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jameadows eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Chapter 22, Scout uses hyperbole, a type of figurative language that involves exaggeration, when she says, "The kitchen table was loaded with enough food to bury the family: hunks of salt pork, tomatoes, beans, even scuppernongs." While there is a lot of food that people have given Atticus to thank him for defending Tom Robinson, it's an exaggeration to say that the food would bury the family. The bountiful food is also a symbol of the African American community's gratitude toward Atticus for defending Tom Robinson. 

Later in the chapter there is another example of hyperbole when Scout says, "Mr. Avery was red in the face from a sneezing spell and nearly blew us off the sidewalk when we came up." While Mr. Avery sneezes a great deal, Scout is exaggerating by saying that he is going to blow her, Jem, and Dill off the sidewalk with his sneezing. 

Dill later reports that Aunt Rachel said, "If a man like Atticus Finch wants to butt his head against a stone wall, it’s his head." In this example, Aunt Rachel is using a metaphor to compare Atticus's defense of Tom Robinson (which she considers pointless and useless) to the stupid act of hitting his head against a hard wall.

In another part of the chapter, Dill says of Aunt Rachel, using a metaphor, "She’s just seein’ too many snakes in the closet." This metaphor involves using the idea of seeing snakes to represent the way that people who drink too much alcohol often see things that aren't there. This is also an allusion to the way in which alcoholics are supposed to see snakes when they are withdrawing from drinking. Dill later says of Aunt Rachel and Miss Stephanie, “Every one of ‘em oughta be ridin’ broomsticks. Aunt Rachel already does.” He uses a metaphor to compare the hateful and spiteful women of the town to witches. 

Jem says in this chapter that living in Maycomb is "like bein' a caterpillar in a cocoon, that’s what it is,” he said. “Like somethin’ asleep wrapped up in a warm place." He uses a simile to express the way he has felt about growing up protected in Maycomb, as he now realizes that there is a wider world that is not as protected or warm. 

bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Literary devices found in Chapter 22 of Harper Lee's novel To Kill a Mockingbird include the following:

PERSONIFICATION--"Miss Stephanie's nose quivered with curiosity;" "Miss Maudie's diction was deadly;" "There's danger a'-comin';" "Jem's eyes flashed at her."

ALLUSION--Atticus remarks that the inhabitants of the White House don't have chicken for breakfast.

SYMBOLISM--Dill declares that he wants to be a clown when he grows up, but the clown actually symbolizes a continuance of youth and of delaying the onset of adulthood. Also, the two little cakes baked by Miss Maudie represent rewards for Jem and Scout.

SIMILE--"It's just as much Maycomb County as missionary teas."

METAPHOR--"Too many snakes in the closet."

spartansoldier71 | Student

Hi, an alusion in chapter 22 of To Kill a Mockingbird wuld b hn Aticus sys on page 286, "Times are too hard" he's indirectly stating ow tmes are hrd during te depression. you have to remember that te book takes place in the 1930s which is when the Geat Depression happened. hope this helps, good luck.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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