What shows that Scout has a new respect for Aunt Alexandra?

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rmhope eNotes educator| Certified Educator

When Aunt Alexandra is hosting the missionary circle, Atticus comes to the house and calls her to the kitchen. Scout sees how Aunt Alexandra reacts to the news of Tom Robinson's death. Aunt Alexandra is obviously distressed by the horrible shooting. She puts her hands to her face, her voice shakes, and Scout thinks she may be crying. Aunt Alexandra then shows her disgust with the town--that they have let Atticus "do what they're too afraid to do themselves," namely, to stand up for the rights of the black residents in the town. This gives Scout an understanding that Aunt Alexandra is a compassionate woman after all. When Aunt Alexandra is able to pull herself together, despite how upset she is, and go out to graciously serve the women she has just railed against, Scout sees how strong her aunt is. Aunt Alexandra nods toward Scout and the tray of cookies. Scout mimics her aunt's manners and poise as she passes around the tray of cookies "with my very best company manners." Scout concludes, "If Aunty could be a lady at a time like this, so could I." She begins to see the value of her aunt's constantly insisting that she behave like a lady. 

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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