What are some quotes that portray Scout being stubborn throughout To Kill a Mockingbird?

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amarang9's profile pic

amarang9 | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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There are a lot of examples of Scout's stubbornness. One of the most pivotal moments in the novel is in Chapter 15 when Atticus is guarding the jailhouse. In fact, Jem is equally stubborn. Atticus tells them to go home, and Jem is defiant. Some of the men of Maycomb went to the jail to rough up, scare or kill Tom Robinson. Following Jem's defiance, one of these men gets physical with Jem and this is when Scout really steps in and her stubborn tendencies diffuse, rather than exacerbate, a tense situation.

It is particularly when Scout singles out Mr. Cunningham that the situation gets resolved. She turns Mr. Cunningham from a mindless member of the mob to one who stops and thinks for himself. Mr. Cunningham then persuades the mob to clear out. Scout is essentially attempting a filibuster. She says,

“Well, Atticus, I was just sayin' to Mr. Cunningham that entailments are bad an’ all that, but you said not to worry, it takes a long time sometimes… that you all’d ride it out together…” I was slowly drying up, wondering what idiocy I had committed. Entailments seemed all right enough for livingroom talk" (82). 

Had Scout not been stubborn and defiant, it is possible that the confrontation at the jailhouse would have become violent. 

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gmuss25's profile pic

gmuss25 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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One of Scout's most prominent character traits is that of stubbornness. There are various scenes throughout the novel that portray Scout as being stubborn. In Chapter 14, Jem attempts to settle his sister down and asks her to stop antagonizing Aunt Alexandra. Scout believes Jem is being bossy and acting superior so she punches him in the face after he threatens to spank her. Scout loses her temper and yells,

Jee crawling hova, Jem! Who do you think you are?. . . You damn morphodite, I'll kill you (Lee 85).

Scout's violent actions portray her stubbornness because she has been told numerous times in the past to stop fighting. She also refuses to be bossed around by her older brother, which is why she ends up fighting Jem.

Another scene that portrays Scout's stubbornness takes place in Chapter 17. While Scout and Jem are watching Tom Robinson's trial, the details of the crime are being discussed by the witnesses. Reverend Sykes tells Jem that he should tell Scout to go home. When Jem tells Scout to go home, she says,

You gotta make me first (Lee 106).

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