Blackfoot Identity In Thomas King's Borders By Thomas King

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Modernity has been mainly characterized by its imperialistic policies and colonizing endeavors, which while creating the current legal organization of the world have largely marginalized the many indigenous groups who originally occupied the conquered lands (Andrews and Walton 600). Although post-modern societies have seen an increase in the awareness of these matters, American-Canadian author Thomas King has dedicated his work to throwing light on issues still not tackled. In his short story “Borders”, King tells the adventure of a Blackfoot mother and her child, who try to cross the border to the U.S. but refuse to declare their nationality. It is through his masterful choice of narrator and the careful depiction of the mother’s struggle to maintain her Blackfoot identity that the author conveys the many difficulties First Nations face in their effort to keep their heritages alive.
The narrator of the story is a twelve-year-old boy whose candid view of the events allows the reader to appreciate the struggle to maintain an individual identity in the face of a globalized world. When he tells the reason of his and his mother’s adventure to Mel, the manager of the duty free shop, he simply says “I told him we had nowhere to go, that neither the Americans nor the Canadians would let us in” (King 140). Describing such a complex problem in this simple way, he lets the reader appreciate the absurdity of the situation provoked by border regulations. His ingenuity when responding to
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