What is Calpurnia's attitude towards other people in Chapter 3 of To Kill a Mockingbird?

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In chapter 3, Jem invites Walter Cunningham Jr. over to dinner, and Scout embarrasses him by rudely commenting on his unorthodox eating habits. Calpurnia requests Scout's presence in the kitchen and furiously reprimands Scout for her behavior. Calpurnia tells Scout that she needs to treat her company with respect, regardless of the person's social status. Calpurnia then smacks Scout and makes her eat in the kitchen for the remainder of the meal. After dinner, Scout stays behind to tell Atticus about Calpurnia's "iniquities," and he tells his daughter,

I’ve no intention of getting rid of her, now or ever. We couldn’t operate a single day without Cal, have you ever thought of that? You think about how much Cal does for you, and you mind her, you hear? (Lee, 25).

Atticus's comments regarding Calpurnia's worth reveal her importance to the Finch family. Calpurnia's punishment of Scout illustrates that she is a strict woman who sympathizes with other people's situations. She also believes in treating people with respect, and she defends Walter Cunningham Jr. by reprimanding Scout. Later in the day, Scout returns home from school, and Cal gives her a piece of crackling bread. Cal's compassionate, forgiving nature is demonstrated when she rewards Scout for finishing her first day of school.

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In Chapter 3 of To Kill a Mockingbird, Calpurnia scolds Scout for being inhospitable to Walter Cunningham who has come to the Finch’s home to eat lunch.  Earlier in the day, Scout fights Walter over getting her in trouble with Miss Caroline, her teacher.  When Miss Caroline discovers that Walter didn’t have a lunch, Scout speaks up in class telling Miss Caroline why.  Jem invites Walter over for lunch, and to Scout’s horror, she sees Walter pour syrup all over his lunch.  Walter is so poor that syrup would be something he didn’t get very often.  Scout makes fun of Walter, and Calpurnia calls her into the kitchen to tell her that because Walter is a guest, he can do whatever he wants to his food. 

In this chapter, Calpurnia shows not only her position in the Finch household as a disciplinarian, but she also shows the respect she has for people.  Calpurnia can probably empathize with Walter’s position, and just like Atticus who engages Walter in conversation during the lunch, she understands the importance of showing kindness and respect to everyone.  Her attitude shows that Calpurnia is a no- nonsense person who has high expectations for the Finch children.  She will not allow disrespect in her household by her “adopted” children who she cares for and loves.

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