GS 554 — Elaborating on Native American Perspectives

Our class discussion drew on our reading of Sherman Alexie’s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Thomas King’s Truth & Bright Water, and the 1998 film Smoke Signals.

Themes:

  • Borders as human constructions.
  • Belonging as something that necessitates that there are those who don’t belong.
  • Varying definitions of success.

Questions:

  • How can humor be a vehicle for truth?
  • When can humor be dangerous?
  • What possibilities exist in the threshold spaces between borders?
  • What role can place play in relation to the understanding of the self?
  • What is the relationship between grief and growth?

Suggestions for Additional Reading:

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