To Kill a Mockingbird
Harper Lee
Contributed by Sharon Fleming
Character Analysis

Jean Louise Finch, famously known as Scout is a tomboy, daughter of a widowed lawyer Atticus Finch. As the novel starts, she is a six-year-old, a very enthusiastic girl, observant and a know-it-all. She matures up very fast, and her father teaches her how to read before she starts school. At six years she is very open-minded and sincere; she treats people equally and does not group them into blacks and whites or poor and wealthy. She is very naive and thinks everyone around her is honest just like she is, but at the end of the novel, she is nine and has learnt to deal with situations as they present themselves.


Jeremy Atticus Finch (Jem) is the ten-year-old (older) brother of Scout. He is an intelligent, kind and considerate boy with a wide range of imagination just as his sister Scout. He is more mature than boys his age and his indifference and split personality makes his character even more real.


Atticus Finch, father of two, is a well-known lawyer in Maycomb, Alabama. He is an honest and well-respected man both professionally and personally. He is dedicated to his work, and he defends his neighbors. For instance, his training gives him the courage to defend Tom Robinson in a racially charged rape case. He is known to do the right thing, and the citizens of Maycomb trust him to protect them in court.


Calpurnia is and has been a cook in the Finch's family from the time Jem was born. She is more like a mother to the children. Atticus considers her a part of the family because of her support in helping with the children. She has a strength resembling that of Atticus and her presence in the family gives the children a better understanding of the African American community. She serves as a bridge between the whites and the Blacks and her relationship with Tom makes the case against Tom more personal to Atticus.

Boo Radley

Arthur Radley (Boo) lives three doors from the Finches in the Radley property. Jem, Scout, and Dill are obsessed with him because of the stories they hear about him. He is said to have been put under house arrest by his father, whom he stabbed in the leg, and after his death, Boo's older brother returned home to continue with keeping Boo under house arrest. In the end, the children felt sympathy about Boo whose prejudice they think is the same as the town's prejudice towards Tom Robinson.  


Charles Baker Harris (Dill) is the next door neighbor of the Finches and a nephew of Rachel Haverford. He becomes good friends with Jem and Scout, and Atticus and Calpurnia accept him as family. He moves from one relative to another after his mother remarries, and is more obsessed about luring Boo Radley from his house after hearing the stories about him and drags Jem and Scout along with his plan.   

Bob Ewell

He is Mayella Ewell's father and Tom Robinson's accuser. He is a jobless, racist drunk who gets angry at Atticus for defending Tom. He is unkind and lacks goodwill. He has great feelings of inferiority, and feels insulted when Tom Robinson admits he feels sorry for Mayella since she has nobody to help her. His ignorant nature makes him prefer to be racist, just to have someone to look down upon.

Tom Robinson

He is the black man accused of raping Mayella. He is an honest and hardworking 25-year-old married man with children. He was unlucky to live near the racist Ewells. It is his good heart and willingness to help Mayella with small tasks that lead to his downfall as he ends up being killed, just like a mockingbird killed for sport.

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