Lesson 1- Do not judge someone based on rumors.
- neighbors like Miss Stephanie Crawford tell Scout and Jem of Boo Radley’s alleged past in which he stabbed his father’s leg, then was incarcerated in the courthouse basement, until being sent home, where he still remains veiled inside
- everyone believes that Boo is a convict and a monster
- To Dill, Jem gives a “reasonable” description of Boo: ”Boo was about six-and-a-half feet tall, judging from his tracks; he dined on raw squirrels and any cats he could catch, that’s why his hands were bloodstained─ if you ate an animal raw you could never wash the blood off.”
- through gifts as well as being saved from Mr. Ewell, kids see true kindness of Boo
Lesson 2- Keep fighting, even when the odds of winning are low
- Atticus, is defending a black man, Tom Robinson, who was accused of raping a white woman, Mayella Ewell, in court
- He is determined to win the case, but knows that he will most likely lose, with the whole town having prejudices towards African Americans
- In town, people make cruel remarks as the Finch’s walk by
- Other members of their family criticize Atticus’ choice
- Scout and Jem get teased at school
- Atticus has told his children not to fight with those that insult them and their family
- wanting his children to keep their heads up, Atticus says,” It's when you know you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do.”
- Atticus teaches Scout and Jem the real meaning of bravery
Lesson 3-Take pride in what you believe.
- Mrs. Dubose was a morphine addict that was trying to break the addiction
- Morphine had helped less her pain, but she did not want to die an addict in order to keep her pride.
- Jem’s chastisement helped Mrs. Dubose battle the craving, a distraction
- Atticus says, “I wanted you to see something about her─ I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand.”
- Scout and Jem begin to see Mrs. Dubose as a courageous and prideful fighter