In To Kill a Mockingbird, why does Scout admire Miss Maudie?
Scout loves Miss Maudie for many reasons: for her kindness, her honesty, and her patient understanding of Scout, Jem, and Dill, as well. Scout feels the respect with which Miss Maudie treats them, even though they are "just children." Besides loving her, Scout develops a deep admiration for Maudie, especially in regard to how Maudie reacts when she loses her home to the fire.
The morning after the fire had consumed Maudie's entire house and its contents, Scout and Jem go to see her. They are amazed that Maudie is not sad and grieving; instead, she seems lively, smiling, and full of good cheer:
Always wanted a smaller house, Jem Finch. Gives me more yard. Just think, I'll have more room for my azaleas now!
Telling Scout not to worry about her, Maudie outlines her plans to build a smaller house and put in a beautiful yard.She then wants to talk about what had happened to them the night of the fire. Scout is both impressed and confused by her adult friend:
Miss Maudie puzzled me. With most of her possessions gone and her beloved yard a shambles, she still took a lively and cordial interest in Jem's and my affairs.
Furthermore, Maudie's only real fear and distress during the fire was that it endangered her neighbors and their homes. Years later, as Scout recalled Miss Maudie and the fire, she remembered this fact, clearly an indication of her respect and admiration for Miss Maudie.
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