Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 10th grade April 2001

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To Kill A Mockingbird To Kill a Mockingbird takes place in a small southern town, and in that small town lives a girl named Scout Finch. This girls has three influential people in her childhood. The people who influenced Scout make her think differently about the way people live. Dolphus Raymond is the town drunk and he is not really as he appears. Mrs. Dubose was always cranky but she only wanted a pure soul when she died. Boo Radley may be six and a half feet tall, and he may eat squirrels, but he is very kind and thinks good of other people. Those characters have made a change in Scout Finch's life by the way she thinks of other people.

One character from whom Scout Finch learns that people are not always as they seem is Dolphus Raymond. Dolphus has a reputation of being the town drunk.

Dolphus carries around a brown paper sack with a straw in it. He pretends to be drinking whisky from the sack and therefore he pretends to be drunk. Mr. Raymond's mistress is "black" and his children are "mixed". Dolphus is "white" As Dill and Scout are outside the courthouse, they meet Mr.

Raymond. He offers Dill his paper sack, telling him it is only Coca-Cola in the bottle. Dolphus Raymond explains his reasoning for pretending to be drunk. He tells them that his acting drunk gives some folks a explanation why he likes to sit with other blacks and why he lives with a black women. The town thinks that because he is in the clutches of whisky, he won't change his ways.

People don't understand that he lives the way he does because he likes to. Mr. Raymond trusts Scout with his secret because she is innocent and she understands. She doesn't have her own opinion of him, she only knows by how other people see him. Scout learns that Dolphus Raymond pretends to be drunk because some people give others heck without ever thinking that they are people too. Dolphus is one character from whom Scout learns that people aren't always what they seem.

A second character from who Scout learns that people aren't always what they seem is Mrs. Dubose. Mrs. Dubose lived alone except for a "black" in constant attendance. Mrs. Dubose was very old. She spent most of her days in a wheelchair and in a bed. When Jem and Scout would walk by, she would be sitting on her front porch and bug them regularly on their behavior.

They could never do or say anything to please her. Scout hated Mrs. Dubose. Jem was made to read to her everyday because he had cut the tops off all her flowers. Everyday Mrs. Dubose would set her alarm clock for a later time. When the alarm clock would go off, Scout and Jem could go home. After five weeks, she was off taking morphine. Mrs. Dubose was addicted to taking morphine and wanted to clear her habit before she died, She wanted to die with a pure soul. Everyday she eased off the morphine until she had stopped her addiction. Jem reading to her was a distraction from the pain she was in. When Mrs. Dubose died, she had her caretaker take a camellia over to Jem. The camellia was a symbol of her death. Scout learned what real courage Mrs. Dubose had to take action on her promise to herself, to die free of morphine. Clearly a second character from whom Scout learned that people aren't always as they seem is Mrs.


A last character from who Scout learned that people aren't always as they seem is Boo Radley. Boo Radley was about six and a half feet tall, and he ate raw squirrels and any cats he could find, and his hands were always blood stained. The children thought the Radley place was fascinating. Boo Radley was referred to as a violent male phantom., whom Scout had never seen.

The Radley's were welcomed anywhere in town, but they kept to themselves, and were thought to only go out at night. Boo never had a childhood because his parents locked him in the basement, Boo liked the contact with Jem and Scout. While Jem, Scout and Dill were playing with the tire, Boo was in the window laughing. He tried to tough Jem's head when he was on the Radley porch, but declined when he sensed Jem's fear. Boo put many things in a tree for the kids to collect. He put gum, two soap dolls, two shiny pennies, a watch, a chain, and a spelling metal inside the tree. These objects show that Boo is talented and intelligent. Scout appreciated the objects. During the fire at Mrs. Maudie's house, Boo displays courage when he put a blanket over Scout because he risked being seen by the public to protect her. Boo Radley plays the role of a caretaker and a protector. If Boo is seen, then he has to move into society. When Bob Ewell was after Jem and Scout on their way home from a school recital, Boo saved the children from Bob and carried Jem home, as Jem was unconscious. Bob could have killed the kids if Boo didn't help them. Scout met Boo and he finally got to touch Jem's head. Scout walked Boo home that night and she realized Boo was just an ordinary person, but a special man. Boo helped Scout learn that people aren't always as they seem.

Dolphus Raymond, Mrs. Dubose, and Boo Radley are characters from this novel who influence Scout. Scout Finch learned from these people that people aren't always as they seem.