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Blue Wind Dancing

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Topics: Fiction, Narrative
My Favorite Short Story My favorite short story in the anthropology by Dr. Lynn Fauth is “Blue Winds Dancing.” The author, Tom Whitecloud uses versatile formal-informal storytelling, descriptive language to immerse the reader in the moment, and resolution of self-identity conflict. These elements exemplify Whitecloud’s mastery of fiction writing. The role of an informal storytelling told from a first point of view is effective in describing the disparity between the white man’s world and that of the narrator’s Native American world. Two examples that stick with the reader to greatly emphasize this point. Whitecloud writes, “Being civilized means trying to do everything you don’t want to, never doing anything you want to.” Whitecloud arrives at the conclusion,” These civilized white man want us to be like them—always dissatisfied—getting a hill and wanting a mountain.” The role of conflict serves as two fold literary device. It’s first purpose is the standard motivating factor in the story. However, it’s also used as a subtle reminder of the reader how society molds us into different people. By conforming to the white man society norms “is to make us always dissatisfied—getting a hill and wanting a mountain.” This made me stop a moment and have a moment of introspection. I think this is great literary device to maintain the reader’s attention and raises the critical question: is one’s society better than the other’s? This question is answered by the author with effective comparison and contrast of the two societies.
“Still I know my people have many things that society has taken from the whites. They know how to give; how to tear one’s piece of meat and
Whitecloud identifies with his Native American society over that of the white man because he identifies with their culture and ideals. This search for self-identification with a culture is a significant point to me because I can relate to it.

The plot:
Native American student runs away from school to return home by riding trains.
Setting:
University, freight train traveling to Woodruff, Wisconsin.
Character:
Dynamic character, starts from a student fed up with not fitting in the white-man’s society at his university. Character develops to a determined man arriving home to be with the correct society.
Point of View:
First person- evidence by the use of storytelling from the point of view of “I”.
Style, tone, language:
Switch between informal, formal style to show the reader that the narrator is educated. Mainly formal. Uses highly descriptive language to express love of nature.
Symbols, Myth, Allegory:

Theme:
Expectation vs reality.
Identification with a greater society, but which society?

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