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How does Scout's perspective of Boo Radley change from the beginning of the book to the...

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bilalsddq | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted April 26, 2010 at 11:18 AM via web

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How does Scout's perspective of Boo Radley change from the beginning of the book to the end?

In other words how does Scout's understanding of Boo Radley change, what is the transition?

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 26, 2010 at 11:31 AM (Answer #1)

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As Scout grows older, she also grows wiser, and she comes to recognize that Boo Radley is not the raw squirrel-eating ghoul that legend dictates. Without ever laying eyes on Boo, she comes to recognize that he is a kind soul, and by the end of the novel, she sees that he is also the heroic protector of both of the Finch children. Beginning with the gifts left in the knothole of the tree--the gum, the knife, the lucky penny and the carved figurines--Scout slowly comes to recognize that Boo wants to be their friend. It's still a scary thought to her, however, but two more acts of kindness help to sway her way of thinking. First, Jem finds his pants unexpectedly folded and mended hanging on the Radley fence. Jem and Scout realize that only Boo could have done it. Later, on the night that Miss Maudie's house burns, Scout discovers a blanket wrapped around her shoulders. Atticus joking explains that the whole town must have been out to watch the fire--even Boo, who placed the blanket around Scout for warmth on a cold night. By the night of the Halloween carnival, Scout had already come to the conclusion that Boo was a friendly but eccentric loner who preferred life locked away in his mysterious house. After Boo came to the children's rescue after being attacked by Bob Ewell, Scout recognized him as "our neighbor," a protector and a friend.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 26, 2010 at 11:23 AM (Answer #2)

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At the beginning of the book, Boo Radley is not a human being to her.  He is some sort of weird monster.  She and Jem are deathly afraid of him yet they also use him for their own fun.  In other words, they really don't see him as a person like them.

At the end of the book, Scout has learned that you have to be more understanding and respectful of all sorts of people.  by Chapter 29, she is able to say "Hey" to Boo like a real person.  By Chapter 31, she walks home with him and cares enough to make sure that it looks like he is escorting her so that other people will respect him.

Over the course of the book, Boo Radley becomes a real person to Scout.

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