Heroic Characteristics Of Atticus Finch In To Kill A Mockingbird

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How would you describe a hero? Many people when they think of heroes, they think of superman or batman, a police officer or a firefighter. A hero is described as a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities. In literature, a hero can be a principle of the character of those heroic features for example like Beowulf and Hercules or in this case Atticus Finch. Atticus Finch is considered a hero in literature because of his exemplary moral qualities, his bravery and compassion for equal rights. Throughout the novel in “To Kill A Mockingbird” by Harper Lee, Atticus Finch is a well-respected lawyer he shows many qualities of a hero but primarily his moral courage comes at forth. Atticus finch first takes up a pro bono case of a black man named Tom Robison accused of raping a white women, with such little evidence Atticus knew that he was innocent but due to the racism in Maycomb he knew it was going to be difficult case to win. He wanted a fair trial for an innocent black victim. He said to his children, 'I'm simply defending a Negro his name's Tom Robinson,' (Lee,75). By choosing to defend Robinson, his character shows that he cares about people’s lives because he knew that Tom Robison didn’t have a chance if he went to trial. With that being said, Atticus has a strong sense of morality that he induces to his children throughout the novel we see that he speaks to them directly about moral behavior and he also teaches them about it. Atticus tells to scout “Simply because we were licked a hundred years before we started is no reason for us not to try to win,” (Lee,76) meaning it is a person's right to stand up on what he or she believes in even if it's not the popular choice they can't just give up. Finch is teaching scout a life lesson and most importantly he leads by example showing her that it is important for a person to do the right thing. By standing up for what he believes in, he also stands up to the people in Maycomb as well as the people in the courtroom. By taking the case he knows that he is putting his family in danger. This causes scout and Jem to be constantly harassed by other children and other adults but instead of stopping he explains to his children to learn for themselves to stand up for truth and justice no matter what the consequences. Atticus spreads moral courage without even realizing it. With that being said scout and Jem finally see the harsh reality of segregation and they see the prejudice side of Maycomb.

Furthermore, another way that Atticus finch shows his heroic features throughout the novel is his bravery. One of Atticus's most courageous acts is his taking on the defense of Tom Robinson. Even though defending a black man is dangerous in Maycomb due to racism and prejudice, he does so because he knows it is just and his ethics demands it. Additionally, Atticus provides an exemplary example of bravery in the modest manner of which he shot the rabid dog. He hasn’t shot a gun in years. He almost wants to hide his talent that he has but he explains to his children what he did, '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 anyway and you see it through no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do.' (Lee,112) He is trying to explain to them that it doesn’t take a man with a gun to be manly. His choice to never shoot a gun relates to what real bravery is, and to be a gentleman who would never take advantage of any living thing is manly in his way. Shooting and killing animals didn't appeal to him and either any form of violence. He gains the respect of Scout and Jem, they see that their father in a new light that he is brave and manly in his way.

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Finally, his heroic features don’t stop there. Atticus also displays his compassion for equal rights throughout the novel displaying his moral sense. Atticus tries to attempt getting all of Maycomb County to see that Tom is a person, nothing less, nothing more. In his closing argument speech, he tries to persuade the jury that all the bad things that are traditionally said about black people apply equally to everyone else. Atticus is a fair, objective, and impartial mediator when it comes to people and their equality. He sees neither rich nor poor, black nor white. Atticus reminded the jury to make their decision based on the facts and not from any racial bias. In his closing argument speech he comes and says to the jury, “ Now gentlemen in this country our courts are the great leaders. In our courts, all men are created equal. I’m no idealist to believe firmly in the integrity of our courts and of our jury system. That’s not ideal to me. That’s is a living, working reality!” (Eidenmuller). In his speech, Atticus is saying that people are not born equal that is simply impossible, But in the courtroom, everyone should be treated equal because the justice system treats everyone the same. You can see that Atticus is the few people of Maycomb that believes in racial equality. Atticus makes excellent points in his speech on how Tom Robison is not guilty. Nevertheless, This is the most important quote from the book, 'It's a sin to kill a Mockingbird' (Lee, 90) it's a sin to kill a Mockingbird because it is only trying to bring peace it isn’t bothering nobody, it is not a pest. This quote symbolizes Tom Robison because he is innocent and shouldn’t be killed just because of the color of his skin.

Overall Atticus Finch shows numerous heroic qualities in “To Kill A Mockingbird” you can call Atticus a hero because of how he views his moral qualities. Not to mention because not only he tries to save Tom Robison but because of how he is a gracious person he is. Once again, a hero is defined as a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities. He is someone that fits that description, Atticus is someone we could look up to, and seek to follow in our attitudes and conduct. He is a thoroughly admirable individual. The residents in Maycomb respect him and throughout his journey in the whole book we see that finch is modest. His ways and his actions set good examples as to how a man should be and how he raises his children in which he guides them. They view their father as someone who is different in general with an unprejudiced mind and someone they look up to. Atticus Finch has many heroic qualities his morality, his bravery and compassion for equal rights are what make him an inspiring hero in literature history.

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Heroic Characteristics Of Atticus Finch In To Kill A Mockingbird. (2022, Jun 29). Edubirdie. Retrieved July 19, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/heroic-characteristics-of-atticus-finch-in-to-kill-a-mockingbird/
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