How is Scout Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird smiliar to Lily in The Secret Life of Bees?

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clairewait eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Well this is an interesting question.  At first thought, if we're comparing life circumstances, these girls almost couldn't be more different.

I suppose to get the obvious out of the way first, both girls are young (although Scout is much younger than Lily - they both seem to operate on a similar maturity level and so seem closer in age), both grew up as white girls in southern states during times of high racial tension, and both were highly influenced by a female black caregiver (actually, several, for Lily).  Both girls have a very limited understanding of this racial tension - due to age and inexperience - at the beginning of their stories.

Despite the obvious differences in the two girls' fathers - both lack a mother and therefore must learn many maternal lessons from alternative sources.  Also, despite obvious differences in the two girls' education (and likely, their family social standing for each respective time setting) both girls go through profound experiences at young ages which teach them to see life from other people's perspectives.  Atticus' Finch's famous thematic lesson of walking in someone else's shoes seems to the most prominent experience of Lily and Scout both.  The difference is that while this reality finds Scout without her invitation, Lily leaves home and seeks it personally.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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