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

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Calpurnia by Mind Map: Calpurnia


1.1. Christianity/God

1.1.1. 'She would set me a writing task by scrawling out the alphabet firmly across the top of a tablet, then copying out a chapter of the bible beneath. if i reproduced her penmanship satisfactorily, she rewarded me' pg 19 She went to the black's church or 'the first purchase' and was a strict follower of christianity. She goes every sunday and enjoys the community and worshipping that occurs.

1.2. Equality/Respect

1.2.1. 'Don't matter who they are, anybody sets foot in this house's yo' comp'ny, and don't you let me catch you remarkin' on their ways like you was so high and mighty!' pg26 She had a strong belief in equality and treating everybody whom deserved respect with respect no-matter their colour, ethnicity or heritage.

1.3. Fitting in

1.3.1. 'Suppose you and Scout started talkin' coloured-folks' talk at home- it'd be out of place, wouldn't it? Now what if i talked white-folks' talk at church, and with my neighbours? They'd think i was puttin' on airs to beat Moses.' pg 136 She acts one way around coloured people and another way around whites because of her upbringing.

1.4. Good impressions and appearance

1.4.1. 'I dont want anybody sayin' i dont look after my children,' she muttered. "Mister Jem, you absolutely can't wear that tie with that suit. It's green.' pg128 It is evident when she takes Jem and Scout to church that she wants to make a good impression and appear clean and tidy infront of her community when she makes them bath rigourously and dress nicely.

1.5. Loyalty

1.5.1. 'In some ways she's been harder on them than a mother would have been.......the children love her.' pg 149 She is loyal to the Finches.


2.1. Mother

2.1.1. "Baby ... I just can’t help it if Mister Jem’s growin‘ up. He’s gonna want to be off to himself a lot now, doin’ whatever boys do, so you just come right on in the kitchen when you feel lonesome. We’ll find lots of things to do in here." Chapter 12 page 125 This shows how Calpurnia is a mother figure because she is caring and giving advice to Scout, Scout and Jem see her as a mother very much.

2.2. Role model

2.2.1. "How'd you and mister Jem like to come to church with me tomorrow?" Chapter 12 page 127 This shows Calpurnia is a role model because she isn't scared to take them to a black and get judged.

2.3. Hero

2.3.1. "We watched Calpurnia running towards the Radley place, holding her skirt and apron above her knee. She went up to the front steps and banged on the door" Chapter 10 Page 102 This shows how Calpurnia is a hero because she wanted to tell the Radely people that trouble was coming and she risked her own life to tell them.


3.1. Values

3.1.1. [Lula] "You ain’t got no business bringin‘ white chillun here—they got their church, we got our’n. It is our church, ain’t it, Miss Cal?" [Calpurnia] "It’s the same God, ain’t it? Chapter 7 page 119 Calpurnia is motivated by her values to do right in the world and to be a good mother figure for the children. The quotes shows how Cal believes everyone is equal and everyone should be able to pray.

3.2. Love

3.2.1. "Calpurnia bent down and kissed me." Chapter 3 Page Calpurnia is part of the family and she loves them very much, she is motivated by he love to make sure the kids are safe and happy. She does this by making sure they are home at safe times of the day, and making them drinks and cake.

3.3. Duty

3.3.1. "That boy's yo comp'ny and if he wants to eat up the table-cloth you let him, you hear?" Chapter 3, page 26 This shows how Calpurnia is motivated to be a mother figure for the children, she knows her duty is to raise them right like their mother would have.


4.1. Mother

4.1.1. 'Besides, I don't think the children have suffered from her having brought them up. If anything she's been harder on them than a mother would have been ... she's never let them get away with anything, she's never indulged them the way most coloured nurses do'. - pg 149 Unlike most coloured nurses, Calpurnia takes her role of house maid, much more emotionally connected and acts as a sort of mother for Jem and Scout, in the absence of their real one. She disciplines them like any mother would do, and teachers them morals as well as caring for them ever since they were born.

4.1.2. 'I burst into tears and fled to Calpurnia' pg - 125 Scout's automatic instincts when she is upset is to seek Calpurnia, much like a child would with a mother.

4.2. Family member

4.2.1. 'She's a faithful member of this family .... we still need Cal as much as we ever did .... the children love her' - pg 149 As she takes on the role of mother she is, of course, apart of the Finch household and family, and Atticus defends that with all his might.

4.3. An equal

4.3.1. 'Anything fit to say at the table's fit to say inf ront of Calpurnia. She knows what she means to this family.' - pg 171 Scout, Jem, Atticus all see Calpurnia as one of the family, and therefore an equal. The colour of her skin does not alter at all too them how important she is.

4.4. A black African-American

4.4.1. 'It encourages them. You know how they talk among themselves.' Aunt Alexandra, because Calpurnia is black, automatically stigmatises her as someone who would talk about white people behind their backs and do wrongly towards whites. This shows that Aunt Alexandra sees little worth in Calpurnia, just that she is black, and therefore can act as a servant.

4.5. Not Needed

4.5.1. 'We don't need her now.' pg 149 From the moment Aunt Alexandra arrived she tried to persuade Atticus to dismiss Cal because she thought Cal had a bad influence on the children, her black heritage was shameful and she could handle the housework on her own.

4.6. Someone to be afraid off

4.6.1. 'She had been with us ever since Jem was born, and i had felt her tyrannical presence as long as I could remember' - pg 6 Scout and Jem both listen to Calpurnia and do as she says, for fear of a beating or being told off. However as they grow older, they 'mind her' more and the prospect of the children (scout) being afraid of Cal, isn't as prominent.


5.1. African-American (Black)

5.1.1. 'Calpurnia our cook.' pg 6 'Calpurnia rarely commented on the ways of white people.' She was 'the help'; a coloured cook.

5.2. Skinny/Bonney

5.2.1. 'She was all angles and bones.' pg 6 She was very skinny - times were tough.

5.3. Strong

5.3.1. 'Her hand was as wide as a bed slat and twice as hard.' pg 6 She had worked her whole life and was therefore strong.

5.4. Bad Eyesight

5.4.1. 'She was near sighted; she squinted.' pg 6 She was old (older than Atticus) and therefore she had bad eyesight.


6.1. Upbringing

6.1.1. 'Hush your mouth. Don't matter who they are, anybody sets foot in this house 'yo company, and dont you let me catch you remarkin' on their ways like you so high and mighty! .... if you can't act fit to eat at the table you can just set here and eat in the kitchen!' pg - 26 Throughout the novel Calpurnia acts as a mother for Jem and Scout and has disciplined ever since they were young.

6.2. Segregation

6.2.1. 'Lula stopped, but she said, 'You aint got no buisness bringin' white chillun here - they got their church, we got our'n.' pg 126 When Calpurnia brings Scout and Jem to her church there is some controversy there, as the black people don't want white children present at their service. Calpurnia stands up to them and the children are allowed to attend.

6.3. Family

6.3.1. 'She's a faithful member of this family .... we still need Cal as much as we ever did .... the children love her' - pg 149 Calpurnia relates to themes of family and mothership as she is apart of the Finch family and well respected within.

6.4. Racism and discrimination

6.4.1. 'I dont think it's good habit, Atticus.It encourages them. You know how they talk among themselves.' - pg 171 Aunt Alexandra does not want Calpurnia around because she is black and feels she is not trust worthy to be so involved in the finch household with the children. Aunt Alexandra treats Calpurnia differently than she would with other whites and this is evident when she corrects Atticus on what he should say infront of her.