In Chapter 3 of "To Kill a Mockingbird", what are Scout's character traits that might make her life hard?

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mrs-campbell eNotes educator| Certified Educator

1.  She is quick to anger, and to fight.  The very first sentence states how she "was rubbing [Walter Cunningham's] nose in the dirt," as payment for his mere existence causing him trouble with Miss Caroline, her teacher.  We see this over and over throughout the book, how she is eager to fight, defend, and prove her points through anger.

2.  She is tactless.  This means that she says whatever comes into her head, whether it is kind, socially acceptable, or right for the situation.  As Walter is drowning his lunch in syrup, Scout almost jumps in to comment rudely on how weird that is, but Cal stops her short.  Scout complains to Cal, "but he's gone and drowned his dinner in syrup," and Call has to explain tact to him.

3.  She is naive to the world's ways.  A lot of this will change as she gets older, but for now, it gets her into trouble a bit.  She is unaware of how to treat a guest in the house, she doesn't know about the social networks of Maycomb, and she openly and bluntly informs Miss Caroline of differences between kids and families in the class.  Her naivety will lead her into tricky situations where she will have hard let-downs in her life.

4.  Sulky.  Scout tends to sulk a bit, get down, and mope.  She is upset about having to go back to school, and it takes Atticus giving her a long lecture about how things are for her to resign herself to the fact that she will have to go.  She's not happy about it though.

I hope that those thoughts help a bit; good luck!

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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