Migration In The Hate U Give

April 27, 2022 by Essay Writer

History has shown that people form groups to get a sense of safety, acceptance, and belonging. It is human nature to desire to feel accepted by groups and to ‘fit in’. To achieve this, we choose to act differently around strangers or new colleagues than we would if we were in the company of familiar people, perhaps having two different identities. We only reveal so much about ourselves to others to exhibit a cool persona and to build a connection. In the novel The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas, Starr is willing to change her whole identity to fit in with the group of students at school. In the novel, Starr doesn’t give anyone a chance to see her as a ‘ghetto’. She doesn’t want people to associate her with any type of racial stereotypes, as proven by this quote “Slang makes her [Starr] “hood.” Williamson Starr holds her tongue when people piss her off so nobody will think she’s the ‘angry black girl.’ Williamson Starr is approachable. No stank-eyes, side-eyes, none of that. Williamson Starr is nonconfrontational. Basically, Williamson Starr doesn’t give anyone a reason to call her ghetto” (Thomas 71). I can closely relate to Starr in this situation and understand the reasoning behind her decisions.

When I first came to Canada, it was extremely hard for me to fit in. As a timid boy who barely knew anyone, I had to develop common interests with my classmates to socialize with them. This is similar to how Starr initially felt at Williamson Prep. She was an outsider at first, but having common interests with her classmates gave her a chance to make friends. Furthermore, Devante, an innocent character who’s made some poor life choices, also struggles with conflicting identities. He’s an innocent teenager who likes to play video games but was caught in the middle of a family financial crisis. To help his family, he decides to join a rebellious gang in Garden Heights. Since he never had any support or guidance growing up, he likes having the gang member’s company. This quote by Devante proves that he truly thinks of the King Lords as a family, “With King Lords, we had a whole bunch of folks who had our backs, no matter what. They bought us clothes and shit our momma couldn’t afford and always made sure we ate.” (238). Devante is forced to compete with two external forces pulling at his identity, his family where he’s just an everyday teenager or a King Lord who has to deal drugs in Garden Heights. This is similar to my parents’ idea of unconditional love. They migrated to Canada for us to have a better life. The idea that our parents are willing to sacrifice everything for their kids to overall achieve a better life compares to Devante whose family’s burden is on his shoulders. His actions depict that he is willing to do anything in his power to protect his family. In conclusion, a human’s intrinsic instinct has always been to achieve a feeling of acceptance and willingness to fit into a social group. While many youths struggle with dueling identities, these conflicts help them to flourish into adulthood. 


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