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by Jerry Spinelli

Stargirl Theme of Identity

Who is Stargirl? Unlike Leo, who identifies as an American, an Arizonan, and a Mica High student, our Stargirl just won't be boxed in. Unlike many of the people around her, who function well as members of groups, teams, cliques, and so on, Stargirl thrives on her own, free of labels and social expectations. She is, in a word, herself. Maybe that's what makes her identity so hard to define.

Questions About Identity

  1. If Stargirl were asked to introduce herself to a group of strangers, how would she respond? How would Leo respond? How would you respond?
  2. What role does the show "Hot Seat" play in defining students at the school?
  3. What happens to her identity when Stargirl returns home from her speech competition?
  4. What happens to Leo's identity after his relationship with Stargirl? How does it change?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

All Mica High students, even Stargirl, have no control over their identities. They are simply reflections of their genetics, environment, and other people around them, no matter how much they pretend to be different.

Stargirl shows us that we are in complete control of our identities. We choose who we are, no matter how much other people try to change us.

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