The Host Theme of Identity
"Who am I?" is a difficult question for any person to answer. Human identity is a complicated thing. It's next to impossible to figure out if you have an alien species sharing your brain. In The Host, both humans and aliens are having a bit of an identity crisis. Wanda realizes that it's impossible to separate the human feelings of Melanie's body from her own. Humans who are revived after being implanted by the aliens are stuck in a haze of confusion. If your body chops down a tree in the forest, but you weren't in control, was it really you?
Questions About Identity
- What parts of Wanda's personality are her own? What aspects does she learn from Melanie?
- How does being a prisoner inside her own body affect Melanie's identity? Does it change her personality?
- Why do Jared, Melanie, and Jamie pick the young girl's body for Wanda in the end? How does it change the way others perceive Wanda? How does it change the way she perceives herself?
- Wanda has lived eight lives on eight different planets prior to coming to Earth. Talk about an identity crisis! How does living as another species affect Wanda's approach to living as a human?
Chew on This
Wanda's human body unexpectedly overpowers her alien one. Because of this, she ends up identifying as human and choosing to stay one, even though it means a shorter life span.
Wanda's new body affects her personality, making her more submissive to the humans. They treat her like a child, and she starts to think like one. At least she gets to keep shopping!