Are there any signs of conflict in Chapter 2 of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird?For example: prejudice, sibling rivalry, social conflict.

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Scout is beset by conflict throughout her first day of school. She is not happy when Jem explains that they can no longer be seen together while on the school grounds. She was "to stick with the first grade, and he would stick with the fifth." Nothing went well with her new teacher, Miss Caroline, who ignored Scout's positive educational attributes and scolded her for being able to read and write above her grade level. "The class murmered apprehensively" when Miss Caroline announced that she was from northern Alabama, which the children recognized

... was full of Liquor Interests, Big Mules, steel companies, Republicans, professors, and other persons of no background.  (Chapter 2)

When Miss Caroline "discovered I was literate," she immediately blamed Atticus, claiming he "does not know how to teach." Scout felt guilty, knowing "I had annoyed Miss Caroline," and Jem tried to comfort her during recess. Bored with Miss Caroline's lessons, Scout began writing a letter to Dill in cursive, but the teacher ordered her to stop, since "we don't write in the first grade, we print." Things only got worse when Scout tried to explain to Miss Caroline why Walter Cunningham Jr. had no lunch, but instead of listening to Scout's words of wisdom, the new teacher

... grabbed me by the collar and hauled me back to her desk.  (Chapter 2)

When Miss Caroline told Scout to

"Hold out your hand."
     I thought she was going to spit in it...  (Chapter 2)

but instead, it was to whip her with a ruler. When a "storm of laughter broke loose" afterward, Miss Caroline was chewed out by the sixth grade teacher next door. As the other students left for lunch, Scout watched Miss Caroline

... sink down into her chair and bury her head in her arms. Had her conduct been more friendly toward me, I would have felt sorry for her. She was a pretty little thing.  (Chapter 2)

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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