Exploring the Conflict in Stargazing: What is it?

By immersing yourself in the graphic novel, “Stargazing” by Jen Wang, a fascinating tale unfolds. Christine , a diligent violin-playing girl rooted in the Asian-American community, and Moon, a free-spirited individual who moves into Christine’s neighborhood, are the central characters. Their journey together unfolds against a backdrop of complex socio-cultural mores, teenage angst, and a bitter-sweet clash of distinct personalities.

Main Conflict

The emotional pivot of the story stems from the conflict Moon and Christine experience. The girls, despite their mutual affinities, have differences that create an escalating tension. Here are key instances of conflict:

    • Expectations and Personality Shifts: As Christine starts emulating Moon, adopting new habits such as painting her nails and developing a taste for K-Pop music, her parents disapprove. The tension between parental expectations and personal desires forms a significant part of the conflict.
    • Jealousy and Insecurity: Christine’s insecurity comes to the fore when Moon starts making new friends. Fear of abandonment leads to a rift in their friendship, with Christine even resorting to deliberately embarrassing Moon.
    • Moon’s Illness: Moon’s unexpected health crisis, caused by a discovered brain tumor, puts the friendship to a severe test. The pair grapple with guilt, blame, and fear as they attempt to maneuver this challenge.
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The Meaning behind the Conflict

The interpersonal conflict in ‘Stargazing’ is a reflection of an internal struggle each individual experiences. Identity crisis, acceptance, and the meaning of true friendship are intrinsic to the book’s core.

    • Identity Crisis: The conflict between Moon and Christine reflects their struggle to find their individual identities within the Asian-American community. The story underscores the diversity of experiences within seemingly similar cultural backgrounds.
    • Acceptance: ‘Stargazing’ explores the theme of acceptance beautifully. The prime characters learn to accept their differences, comprehend their mistakes, and strive to adapt, shaping their character growth throughout the narrative.
    • True Friendship: The novel portrays the essence of friendship. Christine and Moon learn to navigate their differences, misunderstandings, and crises together, eventually strengthening their bond.


In the grand scheme of ‘Stargazing’, the central conflict aids in charting the emotional growth and evolution of the lead characters. Ultimately, it is about two friends learning to grapple with their human frailty and strength, accepting their distinct individualities, and cherishing the bond they share. Despite the turbulent journey, the importance of friendship and understanding comes to the forefront, leaving an indelible mark on every reader’s heart.

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