Analysis Of The Absolutely True Diary Of A Part-Time Indian By Sherman Alexie

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The world views poverty as only a negative, causing only pain and unfulfillment with life. In the book The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, the author, Sherman Alexie shows through his privileged characters how unimportant wealth and other treasures can be when someone is unhappy with their life.

An example of this is Arnold’s girlfriend, Penelope. Penelope is the “pretty, blonde girl with everything,” however, this does not mean that she is content with her life. In the book when Arnold goes to the bathroom, he hears a strange noise. When he recognizes that the strange noise he heard was actually Penelope making herself throw up, he remembered to himself that some anorexics are “PROUD to be skinny and starved freaks.” When
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Arnold, by no stretch of the imagination “has it all” when it comes to wealth. However, Arnold is one of the few characters throughout the book who isn’t trying to constantly change themselves. Arnold struggles with identity and confidence, however, unlike some of his friends, he only wants to change himself for the better. For example, joining the basketball team was something he enjoyed. He said that he felt like “a warrior” on the court (141). Arnold found fulfilment in bettering himself. Going to Reardan was to create a better future for himself. Arnold even asks Rowdy in the last chapter to come to to his high school off of the Rez to help Rowdy. Rowdy declined. Although Arnold couldn’t see this about himself at first, he was “nomadic” (230). He had such a bright future that he was making for himself through poverty, through depression, through grief. And in the end, Arnold still came out to be the most successful and fulfilled character in Alexie’s novel. Arnold may be a “freak,” poor, and face unimaginable hardship, but he could always find joy in his life somehow without a wad of cash. This shows that although arnold is poor, poverty does not mean

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