A character sketch of Atticus Finch (To Kill a Mockingbird)
Atticus Finch is one of the main characters of the book “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. Atticus is a lawyer in the provincial town of Maycomb in Alabama. This time he takes up a complicated case of a Negro and stands up for his interests in court.
Atticus himself is a white man, he is over 50 years old, he is a widower with two children, Jem and Jean Louise.
Atticus is characterized both directly (‘he wasn’t a thunderer’) and indirectly, mainly through his speech in court (in the given extract) and in the book itself. Thus, the indirect characterization prevails.
Atticus takes the side of defence in court, he is the only solicitor in the vicinity who defends black people, it makes us understand that he is not a racially-minded scoundrel, like those of Ku-Klux-Klan, and he realizes perfectly, that the truth and the value of human life doesn’t depend on the colour of skin.
Atticus possesses all the necessary qualities of a lawyer – he is unprejudiced, he is objective, careful and thorough man. The very idea of social unequality and racial bigotry makes him indignant, he doesn’t fear to oppose the Ku-Klux-Klan jury, he declares a war, the war between justice and blind “white” illiteracy.
Harper Lee presents him as a strong-willed, decisive and a purposeful person.
He gives a persuasive succession of justificative evidence, but nevertheless the ‘Negro-prejudiced’ jury wins, having committed a perjury, breaking the basic principles of the Constitution.
If all the men in the world, or at least the majority were the same as Atticus Finch, our world would be the world of freedom, equality and universal welfare.