Charles Baker Harris (Dill)

For Scout and Jem, summer way Dill, and Dill"s imagination: "Thus we concerned know Dill together a pocket Merlin, who head teemed with eccentric plans, weird longings, and also quaint fancies" (1.39). The Finch youngsters may have energetic imaginations, however they"re firmly entrenched in the reality of Maycomb. Thanks to Dill"s outsider status, he have the right to see the Maycomb community from a various perspective.

You are watching: Dill in to kill a mockingbird


(Click the character infographic to download.)

Clear Eyes, full Hearts

Take Tom Robinson"s trial. While Scout accepts Mr. Gilmer"s rude treatment of Tom top top the angry stand together normal, Dill beginning crying uncontrollably as soon as he watch Tom being treated so differently from the white witnesses. He can"t quite describe his feelings, but Mr. Raymond can.

"Things haven"t caught up with that one"s instinct yet. Permit him get a little older and he won"t get sick and cry <…> about the straightforward hell civilization give other people—without also thinking. Cry about the hell white human being give colored folks, without also stopping come think the they"re people, too." (20.20-22)

Dill"s sensitivity to Maycomb"s intolerance provides Scout (and us) a various model of just how to respond to what"s happening. The contrast between Dill"s angry tears and Scout"s justification that Mr. Gilmer"s attitude with the how amazing callous "he"s simply a N****" (19.164) argues that Scout"s currently been hit with Maycomb"s ugly racism stick. Not even being Atticus"s daughter has been sufficient to shield her totally from she community"s prejudices.

While Scout and Jem battle after the trial come make sense of the Maycomb neighborhood that they believed they knew therefore well, and to number out their own location in it, Dill take away a an ext detached approach:

"I think I"ll it is in a clown as soon as I obtain grown <…> over there ain"t one point in this human being I deserve to do about folks except laugh, therefore I"m gonna join the circus and laugh mine head off."

"You obtained it backwards, Dill," said Jem. "Clowns room sad, it"s folks that laugh at them."

"Well I"m gonna it is in a new kind of clown. I"m gonna was standing in the middle of the ring and also laugh at the folks." (22.60-64)

While Mr. Raymond predicts the Dill will grow out the crying into not caring, Dill himself comes up v a various path, hiding the tears in laughter. Both responses, however, are daunting for Scout come understand. Dill"s character argues what the constraints of Scout"s perspective can be, giving the reader a more comprehensive picture the what"s the issue with Maycomb v the different limitations that Dill"s viewpoint.

See more: Alcohol: How Many Beers Equal A Shot S Equal A Beer? How Many Beers Are Equal To A Shot Of Vodka

Clown or Critic?

Famous American writer Truman Capote to be a childhood girlfriend of Harper Lee"s, and also he insisted that he to be the version for Dill. Capote didn"t grow up to be a clown, but he did prosper up to it is in an insightful—and sometimes harsh—critic of American culture. Possibly Dill won"t prosper up come laugh at the world, but we think he"ll grow up with something come say around it.