Quote 3

I didn’t jump off the roof because I wanted to be like the Dauntless. I jumped off because I already was like them, and I wanted to show myself to them. I wanted to acknowledge a part of myself that Abnegation demanded that I hide.

This quotation occurs during Chapter Twenty-One, as Tris wanders the tunnel to the Pit entrance for the first time since the day she joined Dauntless. She is feeling contemplative, and by taking some time to herself, she can let her thoughts roam more freely than usual. As she lies in the net at the bottom of the seven-story Pit entrance, she thinks about how her self-image has changed since the day she first jumped into it. She has begun to feel more confident in the Dauntless element of her identity, but her statement reveals that she still considers it only “a part of” her persona. She’s begun to realize that although the faction system praises and cultivates virtue, it also forces people to behave as though only a single aspect of their personality matters. Because Tris is Divergent, she can acknowledge that she has multiple personality traits. This knowledge makes life harder, since it forces her to make choices about how to respond rather than giving her easy answers, both in real life and her fear simulations. Still, she clearly prefers this difficulty to “hiding” parts of herself away and pretending to be someone she’s not.