What does Harper Lee mean by calling Miss Stephanie Crawford "a neighborhood scold?"
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A neighborhood scold is a busybody who knows everything and is critical of everyone.
In chapter 1, Scout describes Miss Stephanie Crawford as the neighborhood scold because she is a nosy neighbor who is into everyone’s business and critical of everything her neighbors do.
So Jem received most of his information from Miss Stephanie Crawford, a neighborhood scold, who said she knew the whole thing. (ch 1)
You can see how having a character like this is useful. Since Miss Stephanie Crawford knows everything that happens in the neighborhood, she can share the news with Scout and Jem. Since she scolds and criticizes her neighbors, we get the local perspective and understand how people in Maycomb feel.
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