An Overview of the Maturation of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird Novel by Harper Lee

As people grow in life, they mature and change. The main character matures as the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, continues. Scout is childish and disrespectful at the beginning of the novel.

She is learning from her experiences throughout the novel. By the end of the novel she has come to have a strong concern for the feelings of others, and understanding the world around her. She learns this through her own experiences. Scout matured a lot throughout the novel.

Scout shows childish behavior at the beginning of the novel. She is disrespectful towards Calpurnia her maid. Scout suggests to Atticus to have her fired. ” She likes Jem better’n she likes me, anyway,’ I concluded, and suggested that Atticus lose no time in packing her off.”(25). When Scout says this after Calpurnia punished her, it shows how inconsiderate and rude she was being toward Calpurnia. Also early in the novel Scout, Jem and Dill are afraid of Boo Radley, they think he is a monster and try to play tricks on him. They don’t know Boo Radley and have never seen him but still judge him on stories they have heard. They are threatened by him, and are scared to go on his property. This is very childlike. Scout also had the immature habit of getting into fistfights that started by the slightest provocation. When Jem had told Scout to stop beating on Walter Cunningham, he asked why she was fighting him in the first place all Scout had to say in response was “He didn’t have any lunch❞(22) this shows she did not have good reason to be fighting him. Scout is very immature in these incidents in the novel

Scout is maturing more and learning from her experiences further into the novel. Scout, Jem and Dill are no longer interested in teasing Boo Radley, they have moved on to new interests. This is a sign of growth. Scout views on her father were changing. She used to think her father was different from the other fathers because he was older and couldn’t do anything. Then after Atticus shot the mad dog in one shot and Scout is told that he has the best shot in town, Scout is proud and influenced more by her father. This is a sign of maturity. Scout is forced to understand that Tom Robinson is being treated differently just because he is black, and realizes how people can be prejudice because her father has taken on the trial of an innocent black man. But Scout is still very confused and disappointed in the verdict, and what people did to help. It shows how upset and confused about the issue she was, when Scout says, “Who in this town did anything to help Tom Robinson, just who?” (215), but she still understands that the issue of racism was in existence. Scout is learning more and more about the real world, and walking in somebody else’s shoes.

Scout is matured through and experiences. When Scout has come to realize that she was no longer afraid of Boo Radley and had the courage to stand on the Radley front porch brings her to adult hood. She finally understands him and sees what he really is like. He is nice, now that she has finally seen him, which Atticus tells her later on “Most people are [real nice], Scout, when you finally see them.” (281) She realized through gradual stages of change, that prejudgment of people is generally inaccurate, and that what people thought of Boo was untrue. Also Scout realizes how her teacher was being hypocritical. Her teacher was always telling them “Over here we don’t believe in persecuting anybody. Persecution comes from people who are prejudiced. Prejudice,”(245) which shows her teacher is against persecution, then Scout over hears her teacher saying that it is good thing Tom Robinson was convicted because the blacks were getting too “high and mighty”. This meaning it is ok to persecute blacks and that she was contradicting herself. This prompts Scout to be disturbed and think a lot. Later in the novel Scout learns to restrain herself from fistfights. Which shows a great deal of respect for others, because she puts herself in their shoes. She learned from Atticus that there are other ways to solve your differences and get out your anger. These are many things that have contributed to the development of Scout’s maturation.

Scout matures through the duration of the novel, by watching the events happen around her. Scout is immature at the beginning of the novel, then learns significant life lessons and has finally grown up by the end. Scout learns to examine the institutions around her more closely to except people as they

are.

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