The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
“I have to prove that I am stronger than everybody else. I have to prove that I will never give up. I will never quit playing hard.” pg (132). Junior is an intelligent Native American teenager that wishes for nothing more than a hopeful future. Though the story is written with a humorous tone the message of the novel is tragic. The tragedy that Alexie through the voice of Arnold presents in his story is that Native American have under privileged lives due to their history and culture. Society has grown to expect them to fail which in turn discouraged them and sucked them dry to their hope and then they continue to live in their poverty. Arnold, who is the exception, finds the courage to leave the reservation even though he is racked with guilt to know that his tribe because they couldn’t find the mutation to prove society wrong.
After reading the book The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, I got a much better understanding of what that title means. When you think of part-time you normally think of having a part-time job when you only work some days but not all the time. Well that is a lot like the life of the main character in this story. Throughout the book, Junior manages to be “half Indian” and “half white” He says “It was like being Indian was my job.” Pg (96). How could someone be “half Indian” and “half white?”
If you have ever moved to new town, or changed schools, then you probably have a pretty good idea how Junior felt throughout the book. After Mr. P talks Junior into getting out of the REZ the only option Junior has, is to travel twenty three miles to Reardan and attend school with the white kids. Being the weirdest and least popular kid, life in the REZ must have been tough. Having parents that drank all the time, and spend money that junior’s family did not have on Alcohol made it hard for him to have clean clothes, and a new outfit to wear now and...
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