This study guide will help you analyze the novel The Hate U Give (2017) by Angie Thomas. You can also find a summary of the text, as well as inspiration for interpreting it and putting it into perspective.
Excerpt from the study guide:
At the beginning of the story, Starr and Hailey are close friends. Both of them go to the Williamson high school, but Hailey comes from an upper class background while Starr grew up in a poor neighborhood.
Although the two of them start out being friends, we get many hints that their friendship has not been entirely without problems. We learn that Hailey unfollowed Starr’s Tumblr after she started posting content related to discrimination and attacks against African Americans (Chapter 5, 40%). Even before this incident it is suggested that Hailey was not a particularly good friend, as Starr’s mother points out that she often pushed Starr to behave in specific ways:
‘What that li’l girl do now?’
Here she goes with this. ‘Momma, you’ve never liked her.’
‘No, I've never liked how you’ve followed her like you can’t think for yourself. Difference.’ (Chapter 15, 20%)
The conflict between Starr and Hailey escalates as the story progresses. First, Hailey makes a racist remark to Starr during basketball practice, and then she refuses to apologize afterwards (and does not even seem to realize that she did something wrong) (Chapter 7, 46%). When their mutual friend Maya attempts to bring Starr and Hailey together to talk things out, Hailey’s insensitive comments during a TV news segment about Khalil’s death only enrage Starr further (Chapter 14, 46%). Finally, Starr’s racist comments about Khalil’s death become so direct that Starr punches her in the face, ending their friendship completely (Chapter 20, 75%).
Towards the end of the story, Hailey attempts to reach out to Starr and rebuild their friendship. However, Starr realizes that Hailey has still not fully realized what she did wrong, and she decides that the friendship is no longer worth it (Chapter 26, 10%).