Here is a short video analysis of the last chapter of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird where I look closely at THREE quotations, offering at least FOUR very useful interpretations of the text.
This technique works as it pays attention to the original text and gives several different possibilities for your analysis and writing.
Watch the video and see how it can help you to generate ideas very easily and very quickly!
“You can pet him, Mr. Arthur, he’s asleep. You couldn’t if he was awake, though, he wouldn’t let you…” I found myself explaining. “Go ahead.”
Boo’s hand hovered over Jem’s head.
“Go on, sir, he’s asleep.”
His hand came down lightly on Jem’s hair.
I was beginning to learn his body English. His hand tightened on mine and he indicated that he wanted to leave.
I led him to the front porch, where his uneasy steps halted. He was still holding my hand and he gave no sign of letting me go.
“Will you take me home?”
He almost whispered it, in the voice of a child afraid of the dark.
I put my foot on the top step and stopped. I would lead him through our house, but I would never lead him home.
“Mr. Arthur, bend your arm down here, like that. That’s right, sir.”
I slipped my hand into the crook of his arm.
He had to stoop a little to accommodate me, but if Miss Stephanie Crawford was watching from her upstairs window, she would see Arthur Radley escorting me down the sidewalk, as any gentleman would do.
We came to the street light on the corner, and I wondered how many times Dill had stood there hugging the fat pole, watching, waiting, hoping. I wondered how many times Jem and I had made this journey, but I entered the Radley front gate for the second time in my life. Boo and I walked up the steps to the porch. His fingers found the front doorknob. He gently released my hand, opened the door, went inside, and shut the door behind him. I never saw him again.
Neighbors bring food with death and flowers with sickness and little things in between. Boo was our neighbor. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch and chain, a pair of good-luck pennies, and our lives. But neighbors give in return. We never put back into the tree what we took out of it: we had given him nothing, and it made me sad….
“Read it out loud, please, Atticus. It’s real scary.”
“No,” he said. “You’ve had enough scaring for a while. This is too—”
“Atticus, I wasn’t scared.”
He raised his eyebrows, and I protested: “Leastways not till I started telling Mr. Tate about it. Jem wasn’t scared. Asked him and he said he wasn’t. Besides, nothin’s real scary except in books.”
Atticus opened his mouth to say something, but shut it again. He took his thumb from the middle of the book and turned back to the first page. I moved over and leaned my head against his knee. “H’rm,” he said. “The Gray Ghost, by Seckatary Hawkins. Chapter One…”
I willed myself to stay awake, but the rain was so soft and the room was so warm and his voice was so deep and his knee was so snug that I slept.
Seconds later, it seemed, his shoe was gently nudging my ribs. He lifted me to my feet and walked me to my room. “Heard every word you said,” I muttered. “…wasn’t sleep at all, ‘s about a ship an’ Three-Fingered Fred ‘n’ Stoner’s Boy….”
He unhooked my overalls, leaned me against him, and pulled them off. He held me up with one hand and reached for my pajamas with the other.
“Yeah, an’ they all thought it was Stoner’s Boy messin’ up their clubhouse an’ throwin’ ink all over it an’…”
He guided me to the bed and sat me down. He lifted my legs and put me under the cover.
“An’ they chased him ‘n’ never could catch him ‘cause they didn’t know what he looked like, an’ Atticus, when they finally saw him, why he hadn’t done any of those things… Atticus, he was real nice….”
His hands were under my chin, pulling up the cover, tucking it around me.
“Most people are, Scout, when you finally see them.”
He turned out the light and went into Jem’s room. He would be there all night, and he would be there when Jem waked up in the morning.
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The Woman in Black
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