Authors normally create characters with certain statuses. With the status given to each character, the development of the plot can begin. Furthermore, these characters can then be examined with their own unique characteristics. In the novel, to kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Both Atticus Finch and Aunt Alexandra are analyzed by one similarity and difference. Being two guardians of Scout and Jem, their styles are similar. However, their views on family status are reversed. While both Aunt Alexandra and Atticus play a big parenting role in the novel, their views on family status contact each other.
Atticus and Aunt Alexandra compare very nicely on their authority roles over the children. Firstly, Atticus views his children as mature human beings. When Scout tells Atticus what is going on in regards to what happens at school that saddened her, he responds, “If you’ll concede the necessity of going to school, we’ll go on reading every night just as we always have. Is that a bargain?” (Lee 31) This shows that Atticus has no intention on Speaking to Scout, his six year old daughter, like she is her age. He uses high class words for a child and is compromising with her as if they are equals.
Likewise, Aunt Alexandra also treats the children like mature persons. When the family gets together for Christmas at Finch’s Landing, Scout remember, “Aunt Alexandra was fanatical on the subject of my attire, I could not possibly hope to be a lady (81). At this point, Scout is no more than ten years old, but Aunt Alexandra is pressuring her to become a lady instead of going out and playing with the other children. She does not view her as a little girl but as a mature person who is transitioning to lady hood; which is a must in her opinion.
In contrast, their views on status are different. Atticus has always taught his children, Jem and scout, that everyone is different in many ways and should not be disrespected because of that. When Scout says she will invite Walter Cunningham over, Aunt Alexandra says no because of his social status, Jem reminds her, “Atticus says you can choose your friends but you sho can’t choose your family” (300). Atticus knows people cannot choose their own family nor the status that comes with it so he teaches his children to be logical and inclusive.
On the other hand, Aunt Alexandra only cares about excluding those who do not meet her standards socially. When Scout decides to invite Walter over, Aunt Alexandra’s explanation for not allowing her to do so is. “Because he-is-trash, that’s why you can’t play with him. I’ll not have you around him, picking up his habits and learning Lord-knows-what” (300). Aunt Alexandra is refusing the invite before it is ever sent out because Walter happens to be poor and not of their high class. Aunt Alexandra and Atticus do not have the same mentality when it comes to social class.
In the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, Aunt Alexandra and Atticus Finch are compared in their parenting role, but they can be contrasted through their views on social status. Atticus and Aunt Alexandra do not look at age when talking to the children. Atticus teaches respect for everyone whereas Aunt Alexandra is obsessed with high class and status. Even thought they have different characteristics, they have a thing or two in common.