Analysis Of The Absolutely True Diary Of A Part-Time Indian And Smoke Signals

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While in the process of writing, authors often mirror themes in each of their publications. Sherman Alexie, author of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian and co-producer of Smoke Signals, demonstrates this technique through the aforementioned works by introducing topics such as family relationships, identity crises, the power of friendships, alcoholism, and the inevitability of death in both storylines. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian reveals the story of a young Indian boy named Junior Spirit who hopes to leave his home in search for a better life. He is often picked on by his fellow tribe members for having aspirations beyond the reservation. When Junior ventures to Reardan, he comes to realize that there is …show more content…
Alcohol and death aren’t always directly related, but Alexie’s works highlight how the two play a role in Junior and Victor’s life. Junior reflects on the Indian stereotype that alcohol is a way of life on the reservation. Junior’s father suffers from an alcoholic addiction, just like many of the other men in Junior’s life. Junior has been in the presence of alcohol throughout his young life, and it has sadly played a role in many deaths to his family. His sister passed away in a fire because she was too drunk to wake up to the alarm. A drunk driver struck his grandmother. His dad’s best friend died in a drunken shootout. As a boy, Junior has gone to an absurd number of funerals, with many because of poor choices while under the influence. Like Junior, Victor struggles with alcoholism in his own family. His father is a violent, abusive drunk who seemed to love alcohol more than anything. When Victor was a newborn, his father caused a deadly house fire by setting off a firecracker while intoxicated. Since that moment in time, Victor’s father’s life seemed to spiral out of control. He could no longer remain on the reservation in peace, and uprooted himself after an altercation with his wife. As Victor travels for his father’s cremains, he finds out that his father passed away in his sleep, perhaps from alcohol poisoning or shutdown of the liver. As seen in both Alexie’s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian and Smoke Signals, overindulgence can lead to sudden

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