Kill A Mockingbird Empathy

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The Importance of Empathy “You never really understand a person until you… climb into his skin and walk around in it”(Lee19). To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is a novel about a small town in the south during the great depression. The social order in the town has been established by generations of the same families living there. Two children, Jem and Scout, grow up with the guidance of their wise father, Atticus, and realize all the racism and discrimination in the town and how wrong it is. When Atticus takes on the a case to defend a black man who was wrongly accused of rape. They become the target of some of the discrimination for helping a black person and the kids have to grow up fast and learn a lot about the world. In To Kill a Mockingbird, …show more content…
She gets in trouble with her teacher for explaining to her that Walter does not eat lunch because he comes from a dirt poor family, so she goes after him after school. Jem, her brother, catches her, says “‘Scout stop’”, looks at the hungry boy and says ‘“Come home to dinner with us Walter’”(Lee 30). While all Scout sees when she looks at the boy is his family name, Jem has empathy and compassion for him and sees that he is hungry and does what he can to help him out. Jems compassion for Walter overcame the stereotypes and discrimination he had attached to him. Walter takes the offer. He walks with them to their house and Calpurnia, their housekeeper, served them dinner. Scout is confused and appalled when he pours syrup all over his meal. She rudely asks him what he’s doing gets called into the kitchen by Calpurnia. She gets scolded and in her defense she says “‘He ain’t company, Cal, he’s just a Cunningham’”(Lee 33). Harper Lee is displaying the town 's way of thinking through the views of an innocent little girl who is growing up in it. They forget to have empathy for people attached to a disgraced family, or even worse black people, because of the stereotypes attached to them. All in all, the author is showing the reader how much discrimination is within the town and how little compassion and empathy the people have for others. As scout grows up and learns from her father Atticus, she understands more …show more content…
Atticus has taken a case to defend a black man who has been falsely accused of rape. Because he has empathy and compassion for others and puts himself above the discriminating town, he helps this man to the best if his ability even though the town disapproves. They would rather convict him in a quick unfair trial and be done with it because he is black. One night a mob of men went to try and murder the man, Tom, before his trial. Atticus sits outside the jail that Tom is sleeping in to protect him. Jem and Scout know something bad is going on and are worried so they secretly follow their dad there late at night. They run through the men to Atticus because they are scared for him. Scout sees Walters father in the mob of men who she knows Atticus has helped in the past for free because he couldn 't afford it. She tells him Walter is “‘a real nice boy’” and reminds him that they “‘brought him home for dinner one time’”(Lee 205). Weather she knows it or not, what she is doing is reminding him that Atticus has helped him a lot despite his lack of money. This makes him realize that all Atticus is trying to do is help out another man and what he is doing is wrong. Feeling empathy for Tom and Atticus, he gets the men to leave. After Atticus Jem and Scout make it home Atticus tells Jem “‘Mr. Cunningham’s basically a good man’...’he was part

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