ADVANTAGES

Due to the extent of which the Native American people and their culture has become marginalized in modern America, the importance of a voice as original and talented as Sherman Alexie’s cannot be overstated. Through his fiction, he shows us who can never truly understand how nearly six hundred years after Columbus arrived in the Americas the Indians continue to suffer, but also how they preserve in the face of adversity with dignity. If you don’t believe that Indians aren’t still discriminated against, ask yourself why Johnny Depp is playing Tonto in the new Lone Ranger film (a character with which Alexie has previously voiced his displeasure). Or why unemployment and alcoholism and crime are so high on reservations, or why education is so low. These are the problems that Alexie faces every day and chooses to write about, because they are important to him, and they should be important to us. I think the most tragic lines in a collection that contains a number of real tragedies are four short simple lines in the opening poem, The Limited;

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