To Kill A Mockingbird


Theme 1-Growing Up

To Kill A Mockingbird spans over a period of 3 years, and during this time Jem and Scout grow up a lot. At the beginning of the story they are innocent little children and by the end of it, they have lost their innocence and have gained a more complex understanding of the world. Jem and Scout gain many life lessons throughout the book and grow up very much by the end. One of the most important lessons that Scout learned is you don't know someone until you have been in her shoes, she learns this at the end of the book when she stands on the Radley's porch.

Theme 2-Courage

Jem and Scout, when they're young think that courage is the willingness and strength to get your way. Atticus defines courage as "when you know you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what." Courage isn't about winning or losing, its about sticking with something even if you know you are going to lose, because its the right thing to do. There are many examples of courage in To Kill A Mockingbird, including Mrs. Dubose fighting her morphine addiction, Atticus trying to help Tom Robinson, and Mr. Underwood's article about Tom Robinson.

How the Themes Relate

These two themes relate to each other a lot in To Kill A Mockingbird. AS a person grows up, they gain a better understanding on courage and what it is like. As you grow up you determine when to be courageous and when not to be. Atticus tells Scout and Jem that courage is doing the right thing no matter what the consequences, this helps Jem and Scout grow up.