Study Guide

Beauty Queens Identity

By Libba Bray

Identity

Who am I? It's a question that most teenagers ask themselves at some point. So it should be no surprise that this question comes up for the teenage girls in this story, especially since basically every circumstance in their lives have changed. Surviving on an island with a hostile climate wasn't exactly on their to-do lists.

In the beauty pageant, the girls have to make choices on how to present themselves. They have to have a platform and an answer for what they want to be when they grow up. How fair is that, though? Not every teenager's opinions or future plans are set in stone.

A lot of these girls question the identity they'd taken for granted, or try to find a personal story that feels like it fits. Just your typical teenage identity exploration, but with a few more giant snakes.

Questions About Identity

  1. How does Tiara emerge from her parents' shadow while she is on the island?
  2. Why does Sosie resist categorizing her sexual identity?
  3. What is Miss Ohio's plan for standing out, and why does she feel she needs to do it?
  4. What parts of Taylor's identity change and what parts hold strong over the course of the story?

Chew on This

It is not in dating Jennifer, but in breaking up with Jennifer, that Sosie figures out who she is.

The beauty queens find their identities by being open about their feelings.

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