Topic 7: In chapter 22, Miss Maudie says some things to Jem and Scout that make the reader really think.  She says “There are some men in this world who were born to do our unpleasant jobs for us.  Your father’s one of them” (Lee 288).  She also says, “We’re the safest folks in the world.  We’re so rarely called on to be Christians, but when we are, we’ve got men like Atticus to go for us” (Lee 288).  And she also says that “Atticus Finch won’t win [the trial], he can’t win, but he’s the only man in these parts who can keep a jury out so long in a case like that.  And… we’re making a step—it’s just a baby-step, but it’s a step” (Lee 289).  Analyze and examine  these ideas and what Miss Maudie really means.

Tags: TKaMB

Views: 14405

Replies are closed for this discussion.

Replies to This Discussion

I honestly do not fully agree with your point and what you are trying to say because Atticus is not the only person who tries to bring justice into Maycomb and he is not the only person that supports/tries to bring justice to the colored folks of Maycomb. Atticus in my opinion is only a citizen in Maycomb that knows and understands his rights from wrongs. Just like how in chapter 22 when Jem pointed out in his opinion that the citizens of Maycomb were supposedly the best, Miss Maudie says “We’re the safest folks in the world.  We’re so rarely called on to be Christians, but when we are, we’ve got men like Atticus to go for us” (Lee 215). In this quote, she denies that the citizens of Maycomb are the best. This quote goes to show how Atticus is only seen as reliable to the citizens of Maycomb, that he's there to protect them at times when Heck Tate doesn't have the courage to, just like when he (Atticus) had to kill Tim Johnson (the dog). Also, since Atticus was assigned to defend Tom Robinson, he wasn't the only one who stood by Tom's side. And when miss Maudie says "Atticus Finch won’t win [the trial], he can’t win, but he’s the only man in these parts who can keep a jury out so long in a case like that" (Lee216) she is proving that Atticus is a man who will take his time to bring justice to the right person. But yet Atticus wasn't the only person in that courtroom who believed that justice should be brought to Tom Robinson, his children, the reverend,other colored folks and citizens of Maycomb believed in the same thing. This just goes to show how Atticus is a man of strength and patience when it comes to standing up to doing the right thing, even if others disagree.

When Miss Maudie said what she said in chapter 22 she tried to let Jem know that Atticus is a man of integrity and he does his best for the well being of the community. She tried informing him that "There are some men in this world who are born to do out unpleasant jobs for us. [Atticus is] one of them" (Lee 288). By saying this she is showing that Atticus is a hard worker even when his job is the "unpleasant" (Lee 288) job that Miss Maudie described. Miss Maudie's purpose was also to show Jem that Atticus is a person that Maycomb county would like to show as an example of what the county is like. "We're the safest folks in the world. We're so rarely called on to be Christians, but when we are, we've got men like Atticus to go for us" (Lee 288). Miss Maudie also tells Jem that it is not Atticus' fault that he lost the trial but it is the attitude of the county's fault. "Atticus Finch won't win [the trial], he can't win, but he's the only man in these parts that can keep a jury out so long in a case like that. And... we're making a step-it's just a baby-step, but it's a step" (Lee 289).

Overall the point that Miss Maudie's trying to make is that Atticus is a well rounded man who, even though he lost the case, is still a hard working, fighting man. Another point she tried to make is that the city is racist and this effects every aspect of it, but this is slowly changing.

You kind of just summarized what happened, I didn't really see any analysis. I personally believe that she was trying to convey the importance of the trial and what it meant for both Maycomb and Atticus, as well as reassuring them that although it seemed unpleasant, it was an inevitable awakening for the county. It was necessary because "it was a time of vague optimism...Maycomb County had recently been told it had nothing to fear but fear itself" (Lee 6). Everyone needed Atticus to open their eyes to their own wrongs and work to fix it. Maycomb was slowly becoming a self-destructive town with self-destructive tendencies with all the toxic people and racism in Scout's town.
Do you think when Miss Maudie mentioned how Christians are rarely called upon to be so, but when they are, Atticus is the best surrogate for them as they can get, that she simply meant that they can't do it themselves, or that they refuse to and push Atticus to face the consequences for them?

Ms. Maudie really means that there are people in this world that do things that other people cant/are scared to do. People that do things that others cant, are brave. Some people are just scared to do it and others just don't want to do it. Brave people will do things that others are afraid to do. From the book , To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee there is evidence for this idea. To further illuminate this point, "If you shouldn't be defendin' him, then why are you doin' it?-Scout"For a number of reasons," said Atticus. "The main one is, if I didn't I couldn't hold up my head in town, I couldn't represent this county in the legislature, I couldn't even tell you or Jem not to do something again. […] Scout, simply by the nature of the work, every lawyer gets at least one case in his lifetime that affects him personally. This one's mine, I guess." (Lee 16-21).This shows that Atticus is being brave by taking up a case for a negro when he's white. Most people wouldn't do that , but Atticus did so that proves that he's brave. Ms. Maudie reveals to the kids that some people will do things that others are afraid of.

I agree with you because it takes a lot to do something, even if you know that it's right, when everyone is sure to defame you, exactly as they did with Atticus. It takes a lot of courage to recognize that you must do something simply because it is right and actually go through with it. Many times, people have excuses as to why they can't or won't stand up for the truth, but to do what is right regardless of the consequences... That is integrity. The people of Maycomb use excuses as to why they won't serve their court as the jury, and Atticus explains it as such:

 "With people like us—that's our share of the bill. We generally get the juries we deserve. Our stout Maycomb citizens aren't interested, in the first place. In the second place, they're afraid. [..] Well, what if—say, Mr. Link Deas had to decide the amount of damages to award, say, Miss Maudie, when Miss Rachel ran over her with a car. Link wouldn't like the thought of losing either lady's business at his store, would he? So he tells Judge Taylor that he can't serve on the jury because he doesn't have anybody to keep store for him while he's gone. So Judge Taylor excuses him. Sometimes he excuses him wrathfully." (Lee 23.46-49)

 Many times people in Maycomb are excused once they present their petty excuses, but Atticus refuses to exempt himself from his responsibilities, even at the cost of his own reputation. He is resolute in defending Tom, and to me, it was a very tenacious move. 

I agree with your opinion but i believe that there is more as to what Miss Maudie is really trying to say about Atticus than just his bravery. Atticus, in my opinion, is not only a man that takes risks but is a man that doesn't care about being judged in a good or bad way as he takes the risks. What i mean is that Miss Maudie likes to refer to him as a role model the people of Maycomb should look up to because they all care about their backgrounds and reputations. This is because it makes them who they are and what they are known for in Maycomb. But Atticus sees it differently since he takes challenges and chances to spice up his background instead of just being known for a being a good lawyer and many other things. Just like how Miss Maudie states in the book To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee-a famous author- "Did it ever strike you that Judge Taylor naming Atticus to defending that boy was no accident? That Judge Taylor might have had his reasons for naming him?"(Lee215). This quote goes to show how Miss Maudie notices how others see more in Atticus than just courage. She and others see him as strong and intelligent, but she's more vulnerable and open to state the truth bluntly. This is what i believe Miss Maudie sees in Atticus through her quotes, but the way you explained it made it seem like your point was repetitive. Good effort <3

   The things Miss Maudie says to Jem and Scout in chapter 22 are meant to let the kids and the readers know that atticus is a man of integrity. When Ms. Maudie says Atticus is the type of man who is meant to do unpleasant jobs, she means that hes a good enough man to do the things others either don't have the guts to do or they just don't have enough integrity to do it. She was trying to prove the point that Atticus was truly making a difference by taking tom's case, he was the only man who would agree to defend a negro. By taking the case he showed people that tom wasn't as bad a person as people had thought. Also, when she told jem and scout that they were " taking baby steps", she made them realize that if someone else besides Atticus had taken the case, that step wouldn't have been taken, because if someone else had taken the case they wouldn't have tried as hard as Atticus. In the novel 'To Kill a Mockingbird", by Harper Lee, Miss Maudie says "...[ Jem] did it ever strike you that Judge Taylor naming Atticus to defend [Tom Robinson] was no accident? That Judge Taylor might have had his reasons for naming him?"(Lee 215). Miss Maudie said this to Jem to show him that not only she thought this of Atticus but even Judge Taylor, and he appointed him because most of the county believed Atticus was a man of integrity. She also said Judge Taylor had his reasons-which he did- his reasons were the same things Miss Maudie described about Atticus to Jem and Scout. Thus, Miss Maudie just wanted the kids to know their father as a man of integrity and one of the best men in the county- he was such a good man that he was purposefully appointed to defend a black man.

     I agree with you righteous core when you said "if someone else had taken the case they wouldn't have tried as hard as Atticus" i agree because the people in Maycomb wont care about the defendant especially because he is a black man. To prove this, Atticus says "In our courts, when its a white mans word against a black mans, the white man always wins. They're ugly, but those are the facts of life" (Lee 295). Atticus is basically saying that the white men hold the power in the world. This shows that there is so much hate and discrimination towards the black people. Although Atticus knew he was going to lose this case he still took it because he is a man of integrity like you said before. The fact that Atticus is defending a Black man (Tom Robinson) that is already enough for the people to find him guilty-- just based on his skin color.

When Miss Maudie talks with Jem and Scout Finch about their father, Atticus, she is s trying to illuminate the fact that the average people have a hard time trying to be a leader and show integrity which Atticus displays and has. She also tells the children that with the Tom Robinson case, even though he didn't win he fought for what he believes is right and that is why Atticus is a great role model for the Maycomb community. The children may not understand that, but that is what she is signifying. But what is integrity? Integrity is doing the right thing, and having moral principles. In the Tom Robinson case, nobody believed Atticus on why Robinson was guilty. Atticus still stood up for what is right and that is what he believes. The Tom Robinson case is an example of what Atticus stands up for which is equality to all mankind. When Miss Maudie says "Atticus Finch won't win [the trial], he cant win, but he's the only man in these parts who can keep a jury out so long in a case like that. And... we're making a step - it's just a baby-step, but it's a step"(Lee 246) she is saying that Atticus can reach his goal (equality) even by one step at a time. Another example of how Atticus believes in equality is when he let's his children call him "Atticus" instead of "dad" or "father". This shows that he doesn't want to seem less or more than his children. He wants to be equal to them because they are also human with beliefs and ideas. "We're the safest folks in the world. We're so rarely called on to be Christians, but when we are, we've got men like Atticus to go for us"(Lee 246). This quote goes back to how Atticus is a leader. Atticus has his goal as mentioned before: equality. He wants equality by using the Tom Robinson case to encompass the idea of ruling out segregation and discrimination. By going to court and standing up for what he believes in, he is showing his community that they could do the same. Miss Maudie says "Christians" (Lee 246), what she means by that is that since the setting is in the South, and in the 1930's, "Christians"(Lee 246) are the "right" people in this world. She says that even if we are not viewed as "Christians" (Lee 246) individually, Atticus can show how "right" we are as a community. An example of how Atticus is a leader, is when Miss Maudie says "There are some men in this world who were born to do our unpleasant jobs for us. Your father's one of them" (Lee 245). These "unpleasant" (Lee 245) jobs are the very complicated and difficult jobs like standing up for an African American man accused of rape, in the heart of the South, in the 1930's; where average people cannot do. 

The purpose of the conversation between Miss Maudie and Jem and Scout Finch was to show that their father is a role model to a large society where ordinary people cannot achieve. She also tells the children that their father has an objective that he can reach in his lifetime by working hard and actually believing.

Humanitarian I agree with what you believe is Atticus's goal which is equality but I also think he wants to accomplish something more first in the county of Maycomb which is empathy.This can be seen when Atticus tells Scout " First of all,if you can learn a simple trick Scout, you'll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his[or her] point of view...until you climb into his[or her]skin and walk around in it(Lee 39).I think the simple trick that Atticus is talking about is empathy.When Atticus wants the people of Maycomb to take "baby steps" he wants the steps to be taken toward being more empathetic then they can reach the goal of being equal. In order to become equal, we have to treat others equally especially in race,status,rights, and opportunities. We also have to make an effort towards understanding and sharing the feelings of others. Clearly the citizens of Maycomb have to not form their opinions from stereotypes and biases.When we form our opinions based on knowledge from getting to know a person we get along with others better.Equality is not something that comes easily or quickly but it takes "baby steps" like Miss Maudie said but we have to start with not making those who are different or aren't as fortunate feel inferior.If the people of the county considered things for Tom Robinson's perspective they would be moving towards being more empathetic.All in all, empathy can take one a long way in making more diverse relationships with others.

I agree because Atticus is seen heroic to the average people of the town because of his fearless/gallant personality. Atticus is a hero to the average people because he does what everyone is scared to do: he stands up for people of color and he sees them equal to everyone. Many are afraid of being judged and the consequences of the actions Atticus takes so when they see wrong doings they turn on their blind eye and walk away, while Atticus lives with integrity and faces the wrong doings and tries to rectify them. As the book To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee states, "there are some men in this world who were born to do our unpleasant jobs for us. Your father's one of them"(Lee 245). This shows how Atticus does the "unpleasant" jobs -the jobs none wants to do or be involved in. This is why he is seen as a role model for many people of color and average people. Maycomb citizens look up to Atticus because of the person he is and the change he's making in society. 



Win at School

Commercial Policy

If you are representing a commercial entity, please see the specific guidelines on your participation.





© 2022   Created by Steve Hargadon.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service