To Kill a Mockingbird

Scout's moral character

How does Scout's moral character change throughtout chapters 25 through 31?

Asked by
Last updated by jill d #170087
Answers 1
Add Yours

In Chapter Twenty-Six, Miss Gates's statement that the persecuted Jews have contributed to every society they've been a part of implies that blacks are not contributing in any way to American society. She hypocritically believes that the Jews deserve sympathy because they are white, whereas the persecuted group of the blacks still deserves second-class citizenship. She also insinuates that because the United States is a democracy, fairness is available for all, when blacks are suffering from the same kinds of discrimination and segregation that Jews experience in Hitler's dictatorial regime. The "democracy" she speaks of is not an all-inclusive one that offers the same rights to all. Scout's awareness of her teacher's hypocrisy once again demonstrates her powerful understanding of the true meaning of fairness and equality. 

In Chapter 29, with the description of his hair as "feathery," Boo is immediately identified with the "mockingbird," especially with his slight appearance and fluttery hand movements. He has finally become a real person, completing the progression from monster to human; meanwhile, Mr. Ewell's evilness has turned him into a human monster, whose bristling facial stubble felt by Scout suggests an animal-like appearance. When Scout addresses Boo directly, she makes her final step into the beginnings of maturity, leaving her childhood imaginary tales behind. As a mature young girl, she recognizes Boo as a real person, and treats him as such.

In Chapter Thirty, when Scout compares putting Boo on trial to shooting a mockingbird, she again demonstrates her newfound maturity and adult understanding. Scout understands it is necessary to prevent Boo from receiving excessive public attention, and that Boo should be allowed to live the quiet life he has always known. She knows that at heart, Boo is a good person.