What quotes help to support the theme of growing up in To Kill a Mockingbird, and what is the author's purpose in presenting this theme?

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

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There are many examples of "growing up" to be found in To Kill a Mockingbird. Like many youngsters, Scout wants to grow up fast: She sees Jem getting physically bigger and more distant, leaving her behind. And then there is Scout's romance with her "permanent fiance," Dill. They share forbidden kisses and even an innocent night in Scout's bed, but Dill is away at school when Scout needs him most on Halloween night. The Halloween attack by Bob Ewell seems to serve as a dividing line for Jem's and Scout's leap from childhood into the adult world. Despite the visual restrictions of her ham costume, Scout bears witness to a lot that night: Bob's attack, Jem's injury, the appearance of a mysterious stranger, Bob's death, and finally, seeing Boo Radley in the flesh. It was a lot to take in: She decided that Sheriff Tate's action to falsely call Bob's death self-inflicted was a proper one in order to maintain Boo's privacy, and she would be able to brag to Jem the next morning about meeting Boo. But Scout's new mature outlook still comes from a child's eyes. She thought she had seen it all, and

As I made my way home, I thought Jem and I would get grown but there wasn't much else left for us to learn, except possibly algebra.  (Chapter 31)


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