how does scout know the verdict before she hears it

“How Scout Anticipates the Verdict: An Analysis of Education in To Kill a Mockingbird”


To Kill a Mockingbird cover

“To Kill a Mockingbird” is a novel that centers around Scout Finch, a young girl growing up in the small town of Maycomb, Alabama during the 1930s. Throughout the book, Scout witnesses a trial in which a black man named Tom Robinson is falsely accused of raping a white woman, and her father, Atticus Finch, works to defend him. However, there is a moment in the story where Scout seemingly knows the verdict of the trial before it is even read aloud in court.

The Radley Factor

Boo Radley

One possible explanation for how Scout knows the verdict before it is announced in court is the presence of Boo Radley, the reclusive neighbor with whom Scout and her brother have an ongoing fascination. Throughout the book, Boo Radley watches over Scout and her brother, and even performs small acts of kindness towards them. It is possible that Boo Radley discovered the verdict and communicated it to Scout in some way, either directly or indirectly.

The Power of Perception


Another possibility is that Scout’s perception of the trial and its outcome gave her a sense of what was to come. Throughout the trial, Scout observes the town’s reactions to the case and witnesses first-hand the racial tensions that run deep in Maycomb. She also witnesses Tom Robinson’s powerful testimony, which Atticus notes is the strongest evidence in his favor. Based on these observations, Scout may have subconsciously formed an idea of what the verdict would be.

The Symbolism of the Snowman


Another theory suggests that Scout’s interaction with a snowman earlier in the book foreshadows the verdict of the trial. After a snowfall, Scout and her friend Jem construct a snowman in the likeness of one of their neighbors. Later, they discover that the neighbor was not pleased with their creation and has destroyed it. This incident can be seen as an example of how prejudice can be destructive and how people can lash out when they feel their image is being tarnished. Similarly, the verdict of the trial is ultimately influenced by the racism and prejudice of the town, leading to a destructive outcome for Tom Robinson.

The Power of Suggestion


Finally, it’s possible that Scout’s brother Jem simply told her what he thought the verdict would be. Throughout the trial, Jem becomes increasingly involved and invested in the outcome, and he may have expressed his pessimistic thoughts to Scout. These thoughts may have shaped her perception of the trial and influenced her own understanding of what the outcome would be.



Ultimately, the reason for how Scout knows the verdict before she hears it in “To Kill a Mockingbird” remains a subject of much debate and speculation. It is possible that a combination of factors, including perception, suggestion, and even supernatural forces, contributed to Scout’s understanding of what the verdict would be. However, the book ultimately serves as a powerful commentary on the destructive nature of prejudice and the importance of standing up for what is right, even in the face of overwhelming adversity.

Scout’s Unique Perspective

Scout To Kill a Mockingbird

Scout is a unique character in the book “To Kill a Mockingbird”. As a young girl, her innocence and naivety lead her to view the world in a different light to the adults around her. This unique perspective impacts her understanding of the trial and the verdict, creating a new level of complexity to the story.

Scout’s youth gives her a different view of the world than those around her. Her inexperience leaves her without a filter, allowing her to see things more objectively. She approaches the trial without predetermined beliefs and without being influenced by societal norms and expectations. This allows her to see the facts of the case with clarity that is not clouded by any prejudice.

Furthermore, Scout’s perspective allows her to see the transformation of the characters as the trial progresses. She observes her father, Atticus, as he fights for justice, and even the typically racist community members showing small signs of change. Through her eyes, we see a community that is slowly becoming more receptive to the idea of racial equality, a notion that was foreign to them before the trial.

Scout’s unique perspective also allows for the exploration of the theme of coming of age. She is witness to the harsh realities of life, which leads to her losing much of her innocence by the end of the book. Her realization that not all adults are just and right leads to a new world of complexity that she never considered before.

The impact of Scout’s perspective on the verdict is significant. As a child, she doesn’t understand the societal implications of the trial, the weight that it holds for the black community and the need to punish Tom Robinson’s oppressors. However, she understands that Tom is innocent and that the verdict is unfair. Her youthful outrage at the decision adds an emotional layer to the story that is further amplified when Atticus is left to deliver the news to Tom’s family.

In conclusion, Scout’s unique perspective as a child creates a powerful lens through which to view the story by allowing us to see the world from a different set of eyes. Her youthful curiosity, naivety, and honesty provide much of the book’s heart and contribute to its enduring nature. She allows the reader to empathize in a way that would otherwise be impossible, leading us to a greater understanding of the trial and its impact on society.

Atticus’ Hints

Atticus Hints to Scout During Trial

Throughout the trial, Atticus Finch drops subtle hints that allow Scout to form an educated guess about the verdict. Atticus is incredibly perceptive, and he is aware of the potential outcome of the trial. As a result, he drops subtle hints to Scout throughout the trial that allow her to form a clear opinion about what the verdict is likely to be.

The Jury’s Attitude

To Kill a Mockingbird Jury Image

One of the key hints that Atticus drops is regarding the attitude of the jury. Throughout the trial, Atticus makes several comments about the emotions of the jurors and what he thinks is going on in their minds. He notes that some of the jurors are restless, while others are paying close attention. Atticus also observes that certain jurors are avoiding eye contact with him during the trial, suggesting that they may not be convinced by his argument. Scout, being a curious child, picks up on Atticus’ observations and develops a clearer understanding of the jurors’ attitudes toward the case.

The Reactions of the Onlookers

Atticus Trial Crowd

Another clue that Atticus gives to Scout is regarding the reactions of the onlookers during the trial. Atticus often looks into the crowd of people watching the proceedings, and he comments on what he sees. He notes that some people in the crowd are visibly upset or emotional, while others are completely silent. Atticus also observes that some individuals in the crowd are clearly pointing fingers and gossiping about the trial, indicating that there is a strong division of opinion among the townsfolk. Scout takes notice of these reactions and begins to form her own opinions based on the behavior of the onlookers.

Atticus’ Own Behavior

Atticus Finch Courtroom Image

Finally, Atticus’ own behavior during the trial gives Scout an indication of what he thinks the verdict will be. Atticus is always calm and measured in his approach, but he occasionally lets his guard down and shows frustration or concern. For example, when the prosecutor is cross-examining Tom Robinson, Atticus becomes visibly upset and frustrated with the line of questioning. Scout picks up on this and realizes that Atticus is worried about the outcome of the case. At other times, Atticus is able to remain composed and confident, which gives Scout a sense of reassurance that he believes in his arguments.

Overall, Atticus’ subtle hints throughout the trial allow Scout to piece together the likely verdict. As she watches the proceedings play out, Scout gains a deeper understanding of the complex issues at stake in the case. By the end of the trial, Scout has developed a sense of empathy and compassion for those who are wrongfully accused, and she has come to understand the importance of standing up for what is right, even in the face of overwhelming prejudice and injustice.

Social Context

Social Context

The trial of Tom Robinson in Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird” is a pivotal moment in the novel and a microcosm of the Southern justice system’s racial bias and injustice. Scout and Jem Finch attend the trial and are confounded by the evident guilt of Robinson versus the unwavering racist entrenched in Maycomb, Alabama.

The novel To Kill a Mockingbird takes place in the deep south of the United States, in Maycomb, Alabama, during the 1930s. The social context of the trial is critical in understanding why Scout knows the verdict before it’s announced. The charge against Tom Robinson of raping a white woman, Mayella Ewell, is perceived as a crime that calls for a death sentence. Racial bias is rife in Maycomb, and Robinson is a black man accused of raping a white woman. This social context serves to highlight the inequitable nature of justice in the Southern United States at that time.

The historical context of the story reveals that Maycomb is a Southern town where Jim Crow segregation laws are still in effect, and African Americans live in poverty and oppression. The segregation laws upheld what was described as “separate but equal” facilities for African Americans and whites, but in reality, it meant facilities for African Americans were inferior as compared to those for whites. African Americans were not allowed to eat in white restaurants, use the same bathrooms, or drink from the same water fountains as whites.

The fact that the trial takes place in Maycomb during the 1930s, a highly charged period during which racial tensions were at an all-time high, makes the verdict predictable. Lee’s portrayal of the trial is an illustration of the Southern justice system’s racial bias and injustice, and it emphasizes the conceptual impossibility of Tom Robinson obtaining a fair trial.

The verdict is predictable because the Southern justice system, like the town of Maycomb, is profoundly racist. African Americans were seldom provided a fair trial, and the all-white jury comprised of men who shared the same prejudices and biases against African Americans as the rest of Maycomb. As a result, the guilty verdict was all but inevitable.

It’s critical to understand the social and historical context of the trial to appreciate why Scout knows the verdict before she hears it. She knows that the case is rigged, and the verdict is a foregone conclusion. The trial is just for show, to appease Mayella Ewell’s father and other white constituents. It serves as a stark reminder that no matter how innocent Tom Robinson may be and no matter the facts, the Southern justice system was inherently inequitable towards African Americans.

How Does Scout Know the Verdict Before She Hears It?

Scout To Kill A Mockingbird

In the classic American novel, “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee, Scout, the protagonist, is able to predict the verdict of Tom Robinson’s trial before it is officially announced in the courtroom. As an innocent child who is not yet jaded by the corrupt society around her, Scout has a certain intuition and empathy that allows her to see the situation with a clear perspective. Here’s how Scout is able to predict the verdict before she hears it:

Firstly, throughout the novel, Scout has shown an extraordinary talent for reading people’s emotions and body language. She can sense when something is wrong, and she is able to identify when someone is not telling the truth. During Tom Robinson’s trial, she is very perceptive of the attitudes of the jury and the people of Maycomb. She can sense their prejudices and biases, and she is aware of the social norms that dictate how they think and behave.

Secondly, Scout is a very rational and logical thinker. She is able to piece together the evidence and testimony presented in the trial, and she is able to analyze it critically. She understands that the racial prejudice of the people of Maycomb is what is causing them to convict Tom Robinson, and she sees this as a clear injustice. Scout, being a child with a pure mind, is not bogged down by the complexities and nuances of the adult world, and she is able to see the situation for what it truly is.

Lastly, Scout has a strong moral compass that guides her decisions and actions. She sees the world in black and white, and she is able to distinguish right from wrong. Throughout the novel, she has stood up for what she believes in, even when this puts her in danger. When Scout sees the verdict of Tom’s trial, she is devastated because she knows the verdict is unjust and wrong.

In conclusion, Scout’s ability to predict the verdict of Tom Robinson’s trial is due to her extraordinary talent for reading people’s emotions and body language, her rational and logical thinking, and her strong moral compass. Her intuition and empathy allow her to see the situation with a clear perspective, and as a result, she is able to understand what is happening to Tom Robinson. The social and historical context of “To Kill a Mockingbird” is crucial to understanding why Scout is able to predict the verdict of the trial. It highlights the racial prejudices and biases that were pervasive in the American South at the time, and it shows how these prejudices impacted the lives of innocent people like Tom Robinson. Overall, “To Kill a Mockingbird” remains a powerful commentary on justice, compassion, and the human condition.


To Kill A Mockingbird Conclusion

In conclusion, literature, like “To Kill a Mockingbird,” is a reflection of our society and culture. It provides us with a window into the past, and it allows us to understand our present and future. It is through literature that we are able to explore themes and ideas that are relevant to our lives, such as justice, prejudice, and compassion. By understanding the historical and social context in which literature was written, we are able to appreciate its significance and its impact on society. Moreover, by reading literature critically, we are able to develop our analytical and empathetic skills. This is why literature remains an integral part of our education and our culture, as it allows us to connect with others and to understand our world in a deeper and more meaningful way.

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