By the end of the novel To Kill a Mockingbird, how does Scout reconcile the pressure on her to be a ''southern lady'' with the fact that she prefers her ''father's world''? 

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litgeek2015 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

By Chapter 24 we see that Scout has realized she "must" become a part of the "southern lady" group, but recognizes her preference for her "father's world."

"There was no doubt about it, I must soon enter this world, where on its surface fragrant ladies rocked slowly, fanned gently, and drank cool water."

By using the word "must" it is as though she is resigned to the fact that there are no other options for her because she is female, but she is certainly self-aware of the fact that she will not be at home there.

"I was more at home in my father's world... [where men] did not trap you with innocent questions to make fun of you. Ladies seemed to live in faint horror of men, seemed unwilling to approve wholeheartedly of them."

We must remember, too, that Scout lives in a time and place where gender roles are strictly enforced. We see this time and again with Aunt Alexandra's pressure on her to be a "lady." There simply are few other options for a woman unless she wants to be a bit of an outcast—think Miss Maudie. Miss Maudie is not a perfect Southern lady, and as a result she has a very small circle of friends, keeps mostly to herself, and prefers to spend her time on activities outside of the circles of the Southern ladies. We do have hope that since Scout is friends with her, she may see an alternative to the world of Aunt Alexandra.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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