What does atticus find in the kitchen on the moring after the trial?

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In Chapter 22 as Atticus enters the kitchen, he sees the table "loaded with enough food to bury the family."  The food has been brought to the Finch's in a gesture of gratitude for Atticus's actions.  Atticus Finch has defended a black man, an act of good conscience, not without risks.  Because the black people understand and admire the courage that it has taken for Atticus to do this, they bring him gifts as signs of their appreciation.  Even Miss Maudie calls Atticus over to eat a big cake, a gesture to say that "nothing has changed."  She tells Atticus that at least they have taken a "step--It's just a baby step, but it's a step."

Later on, as Atticus and the children descend Miss Maudie's steps, there is a commotion.  Mr. Avery and Miss Stephanie appear and Miss Rachel hurries Dill homeward.  Miss Stephaie informs Atticus that Mr. Bob Ewell has spat in Atticus's face at the post office and threatened him.

Here, then, the reader is confronted with the contrast of the appreciation of the blacks who have lost a battle, yet move "a baby-step" and the animosity of the whites who have won a battle at the cost of their integrity.  And, as so often happens, people turn their hatred upon the person who simply reminds them of what they are. So, Bob Ewell threatens Atticus, tellling him he "will get him if it takes him the rest of his lfe."