The Lives of American Indians by Kendi

How has living on Indian reservations in America affected American Indians all over the country?

Sherman Alexie wrote “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” about a teenage Spokane Indian boy named Junior who lived on an Indian reservation with his family. Junior had a hard time growing up, but he made a decision that would soon change his whole life. Was it for the better or for the worse? In Sherman Alexie’s novel “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian”, he wrote about how most of the Indians on the reservation were alcoholics and all the deaths caused by alcoholism. These tragic bi-products of alcoholism made Junior furious because he was tired of all the deaths due to other people’s insecurities. Even Junior’s grandma dies because of another person’s alcoholism problems.

The events and livings in the novel are very realistic. According to Native American Aid: Living Conditions, there was a part that read, “Living conditions on reservations have been cited as, ‘comparable to a Third World’. The health rates are also very low on the reservations. Many American Indians who live on reservations die from, diabetes, heart disease, tuberculosis, cancer, and suicide. What caused these epidemics to rise on Native American Reservations was the fact that the Natives were forced to change their traditional way of life toward a Western lifestyle.

Today, there are around 300 federal reservations in the United States. There is an estimate of around 600,000 urban Indians who live in Los Angeles- Long Beach area of California. Throughout Sherman Alexie’s novel “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian”, Junior would mention how poor his family was, how the whole reservation lived in poverty, and how he wanted to find hope in his life instead of being stuck on the reservation for the rest of his life like the rest of the Indians who lived there. That’s why he made the decision to leave the reservation to find hope and decided to go to Rearden High School.Now there about 70% of the Native American Indians live on the reservations anymore. There has been a fear of the loss of culture and language because Indians who are living on the reservations aren’t becoming more exposed to the world.

Also from American Indians Today, nowadays, you can find more American Indians in South West part of the United States, Oklahoma, New York, Arizona, Washington, Colorado, Wisconsin, Oregon, New Mexico and Alaska. There has been a lot of change in the life of American Indians.


3 thoughts on “The Lives of American Indians by Kendi

  1. Dear Kendi,
    I like that you put that some Natives are living in a Third World environment and that there are 300 federal reservations in the USA. I also liked the way you put the pictures in your article. For future reference I think you should shorten the way you talked about the book in the first paragraph. But other than that it was really good.


  2. Kendi,
    I agree with many of the things that you stated in this article. Like you said, the living conditions are practically third world and it is sad how Native American’s have to suffer through these conditions. I also agree with how you stated that poverty in the reservation was important in the book. One thing that I think would also be great to add is how Junior went about going to Rearden High School and how the differences from the reservation affected him. Other than that, great job!


  3. Kendi,
    I thought you did a good job writing this paper. However I thought you kind of change what you were going to talk about during your paper. I thought you did not need to go into so much detail about how many Native Americans live on the reservations and where they live. But, the pictures you used were a good choices. Good job!!


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