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Jem and Scout's first cousin once removed is Francis Hancock, Aunt Alexandra's grandson. Francis is, in short, a spoiled brat, who holds much of the same prejudice as his grandmother. He tells Scout that Aunt Alexandra says Atticus “let’s you all run wild” and “now he’s turned into a nigger-lover.” Apart from the inhumanity of saying something like this at all (let alone about your own family member), Francis does it with an air of superiority and righteousness that Scout cannot stand. So, in typical Scout form, she splits her knuckles open on his teeth when she punches him in the face.
Scout, of course, is the one to be punished: dear, sweet Francis can do no wrong. Uncle Jack spanks Scout, and later she lectures him on his unfairness. This is yet another instance where Scout must struggle with her temper and try to obey Atticus’ instructions to use her head instead of her fists. As the events in Scout’s life become increasingly strange and unpleasant, she feels as if she has no one to turn to for her comfort. However, Scout is finding that one can still be brave and yet fight one’s battles with the head—not the fists. Her bravery in fighting her own battles contrasts with the cowardice of Francis who, though older, gets his grandmother to fight his battles for him.
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