Scout is quite young when the novel opens, around six years old. She is being raised by her father—a man with perhaps the most reliable moral compass in all of Maycomb. Despite Atticus's example, she does pick up on some of the racist language that she hears all around her, particularly due to her young age. For example, when she and Jem build a snowman and then cover him in mud in chapter 8, she reflects, "Jem, I ain’t ever heard of a n***** snowman." Scout is merely parroting the language she's heard when she makes comments like this. Later, when Francis calls Atticus a "n***** lover," Scout punches him. But she doesn't do so out of racist anger:
A n*****-lover. I ain’t very sure what it means, but the way Francis said it—tell you one thing right now, Uncle Jack, I’ll be—I swear before God if I’ll sit there and let him say somethin' about Atticus.
Atticus has not raised his daughter to even understand what terms like this mean, but Scout understands that Francis is insulting...
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