Identity Of Identity

1423 Words6 Pages
The human identity is a complex thing and quite confusing. The search for purpose and self discovery is one that all people must face. Identity is who a person is, what activities they enjoy, their favourite foods, favourite movies, sexual orientation, and gender identity. No person is absolutely sure of their identity as people are always changing and evolving, this may result in differing views than they once had and this change results in once again trying to discover one’s self. This journey to discover one’s identity has been documented in many short stories and novels over the past few decades. These stories help demonstrate the complexity and confusion that is associated with identity and the potentially negative effect that the environment has on one’s search for identity. Gender identity is something that has created conflict among many individuals being harshly criticized for not identifying with the sex they were assigned at birth. These issues of discrimination towards transgendered people had been appropriately addressed in the story Smiley. The story is revolved around a young girl named Jill who lives with her family. However, Jill does not feel as though she truly is a female and is abused and mocked because of this. Jill becomes attracted to another girl and is once again abused and mocked because of this. One night, Jill’s mother instructs her to disrobe and get into the tub. Jill is reluctant but is eventually stripped of her clothes and is revealed to have made a penis out of a bird’s nest that her father referred to as looking like “Old man nuts” (Hamilton 1). Jill then reveals that she is no longer Jill, she says “I’m Jake” (3). Jake’s inability to back down and reluctance to listen to what anybody tells her demonstrates an important aspect of identity, identity is not determined by how a person is born but how they feel. Jake’s journey to discover himself is filled with hardships with nobody being accepting of him. Jake from the very start of the story that “[he wants to] be a boy” (1). His journey of self expression and identity is not halted by what anyone else thinks because his identity is how he feels and not how the world perceives him. Identity is how a person feels
Open Document