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What was Atticus Finch's personality?

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Quick Answer

In "To Kill a Mockingbird," Atticus Finch is an unwavering defender of justice, a man who never loses his temper or treats people unfairly. He believes in turning the other cheek, and does not seek revenge against people who have wronged him.

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Full Answer

One of the strongest aspects of Atticus Finch's personality is his consistency; he is the same person in public that he is in the privacy of his own home. Atticus is firmly opposed to all kinds of racism and believes the law should apply to all people equally. He is able to empathize with other people by seeing the world from their point of view and understanding what is valuable to them and what frightens them. Because of this ability, Atticus does not retaliate against people who insult or threaten him.

Atticus always does what he believes is right, even if he cannot succeed. Although he is surrounded by prejudiced people, Atticus defends in court an unfairly accused black man, Tom Robinson, even though Atticus knows he will lose the case.

Another notable part of Atticus Finch's personality is his ability to resist traditions and peer pressure using his reason. Atticus treats his children respectfully and without condescension; he answers their questions honestly, and he asks them pointed questions that cause them to rethink their views. He does not gossip or insult other people, saving harsh words solely for people who exploit others.

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