What evidence is there that Scout is changing her attitude toward Alexandra in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Throughout most of the Harper Lee novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, Scout has little good to say about her Aunt Alexandra. Scout hates to visit Finch's Landing at Christmas because of her aunt's bossiness and critical tongue. Scout is shocked to find that Alexandra has come to stay with them in Maycomb during the Tom Robinson trial (Atticus never got around to telling his children), and she even worries that her aunt is trying to get rid of her for good.

"... you have a daughter to think of... And don't try to get around it. You've got to face it sooner or later and it might as well be tonight. We don't need her now."

Scout finally realizes that Atticus and Alexandra are talking about Calpurnia, but it shows the mistrust Scout has of her aunt.

But two incidents go a long way in changing her mind. At the missionary circle, she sees Alexandra's sympathetic side upon learning of Tom Robinson's death. Scout is impressed that she can recover so quickly and hide her true sorrow.

    After all, if Aunty could be a lady at a time like this, so could I. 

After Jem and Scout are returned to the Finch home after the attack by Bob Ewell, Alexandra's motherly instincts finally shine through.

    Aunt Alexandra's fingers trembled as she unwound the crushed fabric and wire from around me. "Are you all right, darling?" she asked over and over.
    ... She brought me something to put on, and had I thought about it then, I would have never let her forget it: in her distraction, Aunty brought me my overalls. "Put these on, darling," she said, handing me the garments she most despised.
    She rushed back to Jem's room, then came to me in the hall. She patted me vaguely, and went back to Jem's room.

Alexandra was becoming a mother once more.

Read the study guide:
To Kill a Mockingbird

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