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Essay On Little Bee Identity

Decent Essays
“When I discover who I am, I’ll be free.” (Ralph Ellison np) In a simple sentence novelist Ralph Ellison sums up what identity means to many around the world. Throughout Little Bee, the two main characters, Sarah and Little Bee, struggle with the concept of identity and the fact that their identities tie them down to certain standards and choices. Throughout this essay, how identity is developed through the course of the book, how the definition of identity and the book’s illustration of the development of the identity reflect/compare will be highlighted. To begin with, the meaning of identity varies from person to person. For some, identity means who they are as a person, their beliefs and principles, but for others identity lies in social classes and prejudices. For minorities, many have identities and stereotypes forced upon them, and this may cause how they perceive themselves to be biased. This also affects how…show more content…
When the book begins Little Bee is a homeless, orphan refugee with little to no hope for life. She has no self confidence and lives in eternal fear of “the men” whom she believes could come and kill her at any point. She says:This is the discipline I learned: whenever I go into a new place, I work out how I would kill myself there. In case the men come suddenly, I make sure I am ready. (Cleave 47) She clearly feels no safety or security wherever she is. Her identity lies in her fear of “the men” and how she will survive. Little Bee also states that she wants to disappear into the world, “I am a born again citizen of the developing world and I will prove to you that the color of my life is gray.” (Cleave 38) Little Bee uses the term “gray” to show a contrast between the very different identities she has. Even with Sarah taking her in, Little Bee is still very much that scared refugee but is trying to push that aside to help Sarah with the death of her husband. Little Bee also
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