Atticus Character Analysis
Atticus Finch is one of the major characters in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. Atticus is a lawyer in Maycomb, the representative of Alabama in state legislature, the defendant of Tom Robinson, and the father of Jem and Scout Finch. Throughout To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus is portrayed as a man of integrity, great courage, and a parent who is determined to show his kids what is right and what is wrong. Atticus Finch shows integrity and good morals in many different ways. One way is when Mr.
Cunningham, a client of Atticus’, can not come up with the money to pay him for his service, Atticus accepts payment in vegetables and other things with no questions asked. When Walter Cunningham said, “Mr. Finch, I don’t know when I’ll ever be able to pay you. ” Atticus replied, “Let that be the least of your worries, Walter. ” (pg. 20) This shows good morals because Atticus knows what he is doing was the right thing by helping out the Cunningham family. The second way Atticus shows good morals is when he says “I do my best to love everybody…
I’m hard put, sometimes–baby, it’s never an insult to be called what somebody thinks is a bad name. It just shows you how poor that person is, it doesn’t hurt you. “(pg. 108) Unlike a lot of people in Maycomb who are racist and only focus on social class, Atticus tries to see the good in everybody. Lastly, Atticus shows good morals by having an understanding attitude. He forgives Mrs. Dubose for being so rude to his kids and forces Jem to read to her. When she dies, he talks to Jem and Scout about how courageous she was for trying to resist her morphine addiction.
Atticus once said, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view. ” (pg. 30) This shows integrity because he is very understanding and accepting. Atticus is not only a man with integrity, but he is a man with courage. He shows courage in defending Tom Robinson, a black man accused of raping a white woman, when no one else will. Everyone in the town looks down on Atticus for standing up for Tom, but Atticus continues to defend him in and out of court, because he knows what he is doing is right.
He tells Scout, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view – until you climb into his skin and walk around in it. “(pg. 30) He defends Tom because of this reason, even though he knows he is going to lose. Also, when Atticus is talking about Mrs. Dubose and what a courageous woman she is, he says, “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. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see through it no matter what.
You rarely win, but sometimes you do. ”(pg. 112) Atticus takes this in defending Tom Robinson because he is seeing through the case no matter what. He probably won’t win, but he might. Lastly Atticus shows courage when Scout asks him “If you shouldn’t be defending him, then why are you doin’ it? ”(pg. 75) Atticus tells Scout that he wouldn’t be able to hold his head up in the town or tell them what to do anymore. Atticus knows that he shouldn’t be doing it, but he does anyway because he feels that it is right.
Throughout the entire book, Atticus is shown as a great father. He is an expert in dealing with children and treats his own with a lot of respect and fairness. Scout says, “We were far too old to settle an argument with a fist-fight, so we consulted Atticus. Our father said we were both right. ”(pg. 3) This shows that Atticus is looked at as a voice of reason when his kids are arguing. He was very fair when saying that they were both right, making it so neither of his kids were left feeling upset.
A second time Atticus shows he’s a good parent is when Miss Maudie and Scout are talking, Miss Maudie says that, “Atticus Finch is the same in his house as he is in the public streets,” (pg. 46) He deals with his kids as if they were adults and doesn’t try to hide the world from them. Lastly, Atticus Finch shows good parenting skills another time when he says, “When a child asks you something, answer him, for goodness sake. But don’t make a production of it.
Children are children, but they can spot evasion faster than adults, and evasion simply muddles them. ”(pg. 87) He knows his kids are young and are not adults, but he respects them and does not lie or try to avoid certain things. In conclusion, Atticus is a very respected man. He constantly shows great courage and bravery throughout To Kill a Mockingbird as well as showing integrity, good morals, and very good parenting skills. Atticus finch represents a type of person that everybody should try to be, and who many people in the town of Maycomb look up to.