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Christian Lehmann

Jem's situation throughout the book is highly tumultuous. He has a very difficult time at the trial of Tom Robinson, because he is expecting justice to prevail. When it does not, he has a hard time understanding how the world can work that way. Part of his confusion is brought on by the fact that he is just coming of age, and is at a difficult and formative point in his life. Despite that experience and the challenges he faces because of it, Jem is able to uphold what his father has taught him about justice, and that allows him to get through the trying time and become a better person because of it.

He needs to take time to work through what he learned at Tom Robinson's trial, and he does so. While Mr. Raymond indicates that there is no hope for Jem, Atticus tells Scout that is simply not the case. Jem will recover, and he does so. Much of that can be credited to Atticus' influence on his life, but some of the credit also has to go to Boo Radley's unexpected appearance when Jem and Scout are in trouble. Jem has learned much from the trial, which can be seen by the conclusion of the novel. Protecting those who are harmless and fragile becomes significantly more important to Jem than it ever was in the past. Like Scout, Jem got through a period of innocence and developed into a more well-rounded person with a more realistic approach, while never losing his hope or his faith and joy in the good people who exist in Maycomb.

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