What are three threatening things that happen in Maycomb by the middle of October? 

What are three threatening things that happen in Maycomb by the middle of October?


Expert Answers
teachsuccess eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The answer to your question lies in Chapter 27.

After Bob Ewell is fired from the WPA for laziness, he resumes his weekly jaunt to the welfare office to collect his benefits. While there, he tells Ruth Jones (the welfare lady) that he lost his job because of Atticus. Essentially, Bob refuses to take responsibility for his actions, preferring to blame Atticus for his job loss instead. Here, we see that Bob is desperately trying to redirect the community's sympathy and support towards him and away from Atticus.

The second threatening incident happens to Judge Taylor when he is home alone on a Sunday night. He is alerted by strange noises while he is reading in his study. Initially, he thinks that his beloved dog is responsible for the noises. Upon investigation, he realizes that the noises came from the back of the house. When he makes his way to the back porch to let his dog out, he notices the screen door is swinging open and that it has been cut. All he sees of the apparent burglar is his shadow at the corner of the house. Mrs. Taylor returns home to find Judge Taylor sitting with a shotgun across his lap. Since Judge Taylor is the judge who presided over Tom Robinson's trial, the stalker's timing is highly suspicious. Many suspect that Bob is responsible for the burglary attempt, and Aunt Alexandra believes Bob is planning to punish everyone who was connected to the Robinson trial.

The third threatening incident happens to Helen Robinson, Tom's widow. After Link Deas discovers that Helen has been walking a mile out of her way to get to work to avoid walking past Bob Ewell's house, he decides to confront Bob Ewell about harassing his employee. When Link confronts Bob for the first time, he receives no answer from him. Bob later stalks Helen; he croons foul words within her hearing, as she makes her way to work. This time, Link threatens to bring Bob to court on assault charges if he continues to harass Helen. While nothing more happens to Helen after Link's second warning, the consensus is that Bob is out to hurt those who tarnished his reputation in court.

troutmiller eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The first thing that happened was that Bob Ewell got a job and lost it within a matter of days.  He was "the only man I ever heard of who was fired from the WPA for laziness."  This shows that even when people try to help Bob out, he doesn't do his part.  He's lazy and useless.

The second thing happened to Judge Taylor's house.  When Bob was on trial, the Judge just sat there and looked at Bob like he was a "three-legged chicken"--according to Atticus, he prejudiced that jury by just making Bob look like a fool.  So one night in October, "someone" cut the screen of Judge Taylor's screen door.  Everyone assumed it was Bob getting back at him. He had no other way at getting back, so he threatened the judge that way.

The third thing was how he (and his family) harassed Helen.  They would "chunk" at her as she walked by, and she had to nearly walk a mile out of her way to avoid their house.  So Link Deas made sure Bob stayed away from her.  This just showed how low Bob would go that he would follow around a poor Black woman who was trying to get to work. 

Read the study guide:
To Kill a Mockingbird

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question