Analysis Of The Absolutely True Diary Of A Part-Time Indian

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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 Arnold asks Penelope the difference between being anorexic and bulimic is, Penelope responds with “I’m only bulimic when I’m throwing up.” This makes Arnold think to himself “There are all kinds of addicts, I guess. We all have pain. And we all look for ways to make the pain go away. Penelope gorges on her pain and then throws it up and flushes it away” (107). Penelope might be the popular girl, however we can make a strong inference that she is unhappy with herself. Although she has “everything,” she is still “addicted” to “throwing away her pain,” proving that happiness has nothing to do with what she owns. Another instance of this Arnold’s friend, Gordy. Gordy is a young, white male, and is a complete brainiac. Although this may
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