Adolescence Through the Lens of the Hate Your Give


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Adolescence Through the Lens of the Hate Your Give

The Hate You Give (2018) follows a conflicted young black girl, Starr, which struggles t find her voice. Starr witnesses two of her friends get murdered by white police right before her eyes. Her father has always trained Starr and her two brothers about what to do whenever police officers stop them. Throughout, he has taught them to keep safe, know their rights, and find their voice to speak for the rights of people of color. After Starr witnesses her best friend getting shot at and his father getting harassed, she finds her voice, embraces her blackness and speaks up against racial profiling and police brutality. This film is ideal as it touches on bringing out the experiences adolescents grapple with within their day-to-day lives. This text discusses concepts and processes including adolescents’ relationships with family, romantic relationships, peers and friendships, drug abuse, the role of social media and smartphones and school as a context for development.

One of the main concepts that the film, The Hate You Give (2018) presents is the role of family in adolescents during this stage. It is evident that Star and her two brothers, Seven and Sekani, are deeply grounded in family. As the film starts, their father gives them the talk and tells them how to stay out of trouble. It is known that teenagers tend to be unruly, but this is not the case for Starr. She is painted in the film as an obedient adolescent with a perfect relationship with both of her parents. As regards peers and friendships, Star seems to maintain relationships with the people close to them. She shares a great relationship with Khalil, her childhood best friend, and shares a great relationship with her two white friends, Hailey and Maya. This is consistent with class readings as its evident adolescents tend to form groupings based on their interests and upbringing. Starr has a white boyfriend with whom they both attend Williamson Preparatory together. This is consistent with the class readings as they show that this is the point when adolescents start getting attracted to their opposite sex. Although Star and Chris are in a relationship, Starr is conflicted about getting intimate with Chris and wants to take things slow.

Another concept that comes out clearly in the movie has to do with drug abuse. When a police officer kills Khalil, Starr starts getting death threats so that she cannot speak up. She was the only witness to the murder, but she was afraid to speak out because Khalil worked for the estate kingpin. The kingpin did not want the police to know about his dirty deals with Khalil. This is consistent with the readings because it reflects how young people get caught up in street life of gun violence and selling drugs. Another concept that comes out is school as a context or development. Starr does not attend regular high school, but instead, their parents take them to a predominantly white school in a safer neighborhood. The parents know the schools role in pushing students in the right direction. They want the best for their children, so they take them there. This is consistent with the readings because adolescents must grow through necessary training that prepares them for their future lives. As regards social media, Starr being the main witness to Khalil’s murder, she does not want people to know who she is because of the death threats that she receives. In her first interview, her face is blurred, but she finds her voice after she witnesses her father getting harassed. She joins the demonstrations and stands up to admit that she was the witness. This knowledge is consistent with readings. Social media is a powerful tool which they employ to condemn police brutality.

In closing, the film “The Hate You Give” sufficiently presents the ideas and experiences that adolescents go through in their day-to-day life. They have to juggle family relationships, friendships with peers and romantic relationships. Further, the film uses Starr to showcase issues of drug abuse, the role of social media, and the role of school in the context of a career and work.

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