In Ceremony by Leslie Silko good and evil are portrayed in many ways. One evil that is portrayed was Emo a Laguna Native American that Tayo met during the war. There is also a young man named Tayo who is mixed with a Laguna Native American and Caucasian which is the main character in the story. Throughout the story Emo is portrayed as an example of what not to be. Later in the story we learn Emo’s purpose in Tayo’s ceremony was to test Tayo’s ability to complete his ceremony. Emo is a significant part of the story because it makes Tayo distinguish the witchery that Emo stands for. Emo was always representing evil with the symbols, the witchery toward the people and land, and at the end with the ceremony. He represents evil.
Throughout the story they show Emo as a hostile boy towards Tayo and also toward his people and land. He is introduced as a soldier who fought with Tayo during the war, but after Tayo stabs Emo in the bar he is filled with bitterness towards him. “Emo liked to point to the restless dusty wind and the cloudless skies, to the bony horses chewing on fence posts beside the highway; Emo liked to say “Look what is here for us. Look. Here’s the Indians’ mother earth! Old dried-up thing!” Tayo’s anger made his hands shake. Emo was wrong. All wrong (Silko 23)”. Emo is acting out the story that Betonie told Tayo about the witches. It is Betonie that lets Tayo discovers that it is witchery, Ck’o'yo, and the evil magic it has concocted with its words. “Then they grow away from the earth…they see no life when they look they only see objects. The world is a dead thing for them the trees and rivers are not alive (Silko 125)”. Emo is clearly trying to separate the people from the land which would create havoc, because it’s all part of the ceremony that Emo is trying to complete as well. Emo wants to poison Tayo mind to let him believe that his family’s stories don’t do anything for them or the land. Emo is playing out the story that Betonie is saying...
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