Boo (Arthur) Radley

Use this mindmap to articulate the important qualities about the character you are studying.

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Boo (Arthur) Radley by Mind Map: Boo (Arthur) Radley


1.1. Dislikes the treatment of the blacks

1.1.1. 'I think I'm beginning to understand why Boo Radley's stayed shut up in the house all this time... it's because he wants to stay inside.' 251 Boo Radley stayed inside as he didn't like what was happening in the outside world.

1.2. Good over Evil

1.2.1. A man was passing under it. The man was walking with the staccato steps of someone carrying a load too heavy for him. He was going around the corner. He was carrying Jem. (Page #233) Boo knows Jem and Scout are good children and Bob Ewell is a bad man who lied in court. He knows the children are in trouble, and if it means losing Bob Ewell he will still go through with saving them.


2.1. Paranoid

2.1.1. 'Nobody but the Radley's locked up at night.' 277 This statement shows that the Radley's are precautious.

2.2. Shy

2.2.1. 'His lips parted into a timid smile.' Boo was shy, this could be one of the reasons he always stays inside.' 298

2.3. Uncomfortable

2.3.1. 'Boo would feel more comfortable in the dark.' page 299 As this his first contact with new people and he was always in the dark to have the sudden light would be a shock to the system.

2.4. Boo was afraid of the lights

2.4.1. It was in deep shadow. Boo would feel more comfortable in the dark. (Page 299) Boo spent most of his time indoor with darkness. So he was uncomfortable in the lights.

2.5. Unconfident and Mysterious

2.5.1. 'Every move he made was uncertain, as if he were not sure his hands and feet could make proper contact with the things he touched.' page 305 Boo Radley was not sure of himself and generally didn't like people. He is a concern for Jem, Dill and Scout throughout the whole book.


3.1. Wouldn't be motivated in public, motivated by the darkness

3.1.1. It'd take somebody mighty used to the dark to make a competent witness.' page 302 Boo was used to the dark and he would want to help Jem and Scout against Bob Ewell

3.2. Trouble and Conflict

3.2.1. He was carrying Jem (Page #290) Bob Ewell attacked Jem and Scout and Boo came to the rescue. After Boo killed Bob, he picked up Jem who was unconscious and had a broken arm and carried him home. This shows that he cares for the children very deeply as he put his life in danger for them.

3.3. Friendships

3.3.1. Some tin foil was sticking out of a knot- hole just above my eye level (Page #45) Boo Radley gave the children harmless gifts so he could form a friendship with them


4.1. Scary and Unknown

4.1.1. Malevolent Phantom (page #9) Boo Radley was said to exist, although now one ever saw him. It refers to him as a dark character.

4.2. Good Hearted

4.2.1. Boo was our neighbour. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch and chain, a pair of good luck pennies and our lives. But neighbours 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. (Page 307) At the end Scout felt sad for Boo because Boo helped the a lot but they didn't give Boo in return.

4.3. Sickening/Afraid

4.3.1. My stomach turned to water and I nearly threw up (Page #80) Boo put a blanket around Scout while Miss Maudie's house was burning down without her realising. Jem told Scout that Boo did it and it made her sick in her stomach. This demonstrates how afraid Scout is of Boo Radley.

4.4. Murder/Hurts people

4.4.1. According to Miss Stephanie, Boo was sitting in the living-room cutting some items from the Maycomb Tribune to paste in his scrapbook. His father entered the room. As Mr Radley passed by, Boo drove the scissors into his parent’s leg, pulling them out, wiped them on his pants, and resumed his activities.“According to Miss Stephanie, Boo was sitting in the living-room cutting some items from the Maycomb Tribune to paste in his scrapbook. His father entered the room. As Mr Radley passed by, Boo drove the scissors into his parent’s leg, pulling them out, wiped them on his pants, and resumed his activities. (Page #12) Rumors about Boo Radley give him a reputation for being a menace.


5.1. Normal

5.1.1. His face was as white as his hands , but fir a shadow on his jutting chin. His cheeks were thin to hollowness;his mouth was wide; there were shallow almost delicate indentations at his temples, and his grey eyes were so colourless I thought he was blind. His hair was dead and thin, almost feathery on top of his head. (Page 298) These descriptions showed that Boo was no different to other people. He was an ordinary person.

5.2. Ghost-like

5.2.1. They were white hands, sickly white hands that had never seen the sun, so white they stood out garishly against the dull cream wall in the dim light of Jem's room. page 298 Boo never saw the outside world, and was always inside.

5.3. Feral-Animal

5.3.1. Boo was about six-and-a-half feet tall, judging from his tracks; he dined on raw squirrels and any cats he could catch, that's why his hands were bloodstained if you ate an animal raw, you could never wash the blood off. There was a long jagged scar that ran across his face; what teeth he had were yellow and rotten; his eyes popped, and he drooled most of the time. (page #25) Jem's description of Boo Radley makes him sound like a feral and vicious animal. Although later on in the book it is proved that this was an incorrect judgement.


6.1. Boo was shy and did not want others to know him.

6.1.1. Know what'd happen then? All the ladies in Maycomb includin' my wife'd be knocking on his door bringing angel food cakes. To my way of thinkin', Mr. Finch, taking the one man who's done you and this town a great service an' draggin' him with his shy ways into the limelight—to me, that's a sin. It's a sin and I'm not about to have it on my head. If it was any other man, it'd be different. But not this man, Mr. Finch." (Page 304) Boo preferred to be unknown and undisrupted by other people. Putting him into the spotlight would be very uncomfortable for him.

6.2. Persecution of the innocent

6.2.1. Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mocking bird...Mockingbirds don't do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don't eat up people's gardens, don't nest in corncribs, they don't do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That's why it's a sin to kill a mockingbird (Page #99-100) The two mockingbirds of the novel are Boo Radley and Tom Robinson. Boo Radley isn't a bad person, he only does good, for example he gives the children harmless parents etc. It is not fair to hurt him in any way because he doesn't hurt anyone.

6.3. Looking deeper

6.3.1. Atticus, he was real nice..Most people are, Scout, when you finally see them. (Page #80) Scout is talking about a book she is reading, although it is really a metaphor for the two mockingbirds of the story. Tom was black but innocent and Boo was a recluse but a good person. If you look a little deeper, they are both nice people.