The Hate U Give

by: Angie Thomas

Lisa Carter

Characters Lisa Carter

Lisa consistently acts as a voice of compassion who reminds Starr of the humanity of those around her. While Maverick often gets caught up in the ideological importance of the family remaining in Garden Heights, Lisa never loses sight of the fact that Starr, Seven, and Sekani are children who have emotional needs that philosophy cannot always address. As the voice of emotional reality, Lisa teaches Starr the importance of empathy and understanding. For example, Lisa reminds Starr that Brenda being a bad mother to Khalil does not erase the pain Brenda feels at losing her son, which in turn reminds Starr that Brenda is a complex person despite her drug addiction. Lisa’s model for judging people, based on love and understanding, provides an important foil to how the media judges black people based on stereotypes. While Maverick’s philosophy is louder, Lisa’s compassion is equally important to developing Starr’s outlook on the world.