House Made of Dawn Essay

3292 Words Jan 15th, 2013 14 Pages
Jake Scaduto
ENG 359
10/1/12

Different Eyes Yield Different Results
As is true in any facet of life, your experiences and the events that you have encountered throughout your time on this planet shape everything you know about things in the world. This remains true for the characters in N. Scott Momaday’s House Made of Dawn. The characters of Abel, Francisco, Benally, and Tosamah have all been through various different adventures during their lifetimes. Thanks to pre-existing biases, racism, and life changing events, Abel, Francisco, Ben, and Tosamah all have different conceptions of the world, especially in their attitudes toward Native Americans as well as the white society and these attitudes shape the identity of each
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This caused him to stray form the Native American ways but it still gave him a sense on not belonging and even a possible hatred for the white people. Along with being on drugs, his hatred toward the white society might have been the main reason in his killing of the albino. Although he was not white, the use of the peyote may have caused Abel to see him differently and ultimately riding the world of this evil.
After all of this, the one thing that brings Abel back to his sense of tradition and the Native American way is the death of his grandfather. In returning to Walatowa to fulfill his obligation to his grandfather, Abel’s character is completely transformed. It comes at a time where Abel was nearing beaten to death in Los Angeles yet he knows he needs to come back home in order to lay to rest into the afterlife the one family member he still has left. After the passing, Abel is not the father figure of his family and ultimately the only one that is really left. His ceremonial run at dawn, just as his grandfather had done when he was younger, is something that can be seen as the instilment of his Native American tradition and the transfer of roles from generation to generation. This completes the full cycle is Abel’s life and proves that he can go through the toughest time and experiences but his Native American life and the things that are…

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