Study Guide

A Lesson Before Dying Chapter 24

By Ernest J. Gaines

Chapter 24

  • Miss Emma has decided that they need to make group visits now, so Grant meets up with Reverend Ambrose, Miss Emma, and his aunt at the courthouse. Before he gets there he stops for the notebook and pencil, though.
  • They meet in the dayroom and serve up gumbo. The Reverend says a prayer that seems to last an eternity while the food gets cold.
  • Jefferson says he's not hungry, so Grant asks him to walk around with him. They start doing laps around the room and Grant gets Jefferson to promise to eat to make his godmother feel better.
  • He also tells him that he can be a hero because he can give hope to the people in the quarter if he will just be a man, not a hog.
  • Grant tells Jefferson that he himself is not a hero because he goes along with the unfair system, and that white people feel safe because he doesn't stand up to them.
  • He tries to get Jefferson to stand up to them and prove them all wrong.
  • Grant needs Jefferson because he needs hope. Jefferson starts crying.
  • They go back to the table.