The definition of coming of age is the time when a person becomes an adult. There are three literary elements found in the book that can contribute to the idea of coming of age. These include the characters involved in the story, the theme of the story, and the symbols that are displayed throughout the story
The first literary element that is used is the main characters in the book. Jean Louise Finch easily represents someone who is coming of age. In the early part of the book, Dill, Jem, and Scout are curious to meet Boo Radley because they have heard so many negative things about him. Even though her father told them not to bother Boo Radley, the children still persisted. Later in the passage, Jem and Scout Finch are attacked by Bob Ewell. During this adventure, they are saved by Boo Radley, who ends up killing Bob Ewell. Scout then realizes that Boo Radley is a nice person who is just falsely mistaken to be this creep who stalks people and hurts them. Scout finally understood her father’s lesson which was, “You never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them.” This relates to the theme “coming of age” because at first Scout has thoughts and dreams inside her head about someone but when she grows up, she realizes that all of the thoughts, dreams, and rumors weren’t real.
The second literary element that is used is the theme. The definition of a theme is the subject of a talk, a piece of writing, a person’s thoughts, or an exhibition; a topic. The most important theme in To Kill A Mockingbird is the battle between Good vs Evil. The novel approaches this theme by exaggerating Scout and Jem’s transition from a perspective of childhood innocence, in which they assume that all people are good, to a more grown-up point of view, in which they have confronted evil and must integrate it into their own understanding of the world. Jem is victimized to a certain degree by his realization of the evil of racism during and after the trial. While Scout is able to maintain her faith in human nature despite what happened with Tom Robinson’s conviction. Jem’s faith in justice and in humanity is badly damaged, and he goes into a state of frustration.
The third literary element is symbols. A symbol is a thing that represents or stands for something else, especially a material object representing something abstract. The author uses symbols to connect the meaning of that symbol to our everyday life. One of the most common symbols found in the book is the mockingbird. An example of a mockingbird that is found in the book, is Boo Radley. As the novel progresses, the children’s changing attitude toward Boo Radley is an important measurement of their development from innocence toward a grown-up moral perspective. At the beginning of the book, Boo Radley is just a source of childhood superstition. As he leaves Jem and Scout presents and mends Jem’s pants, he gradually becomes increasingly and intriguingly real to them. At the end of the book, he becomes fully human to Scout, illustrating that she has developed into a caring and understanding person. Boo Radley, an intelligent child ruined by a cruel father, is one of the book’s most important mockingbirds; he is also an important symbol of the good that exists within people. Despite the pain that Boo Radley has suffered, the purity of his heart rules his interaction with the children. In saving Jem and Scout from Bob Ewell, Boo Radley proves the ultimate symbol of good.
I have discussed different literary elements and how they help show the theme of the story. The literary elements were the characters involved, the theme, and different symbols that the author shows us. All of these literary elements help show the theme of Good vs Evil because, in all of the examples, it shows an innocent character being harassed by another character.
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