The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian cover image

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

by Sherman Alexie
Start Free Trial

Discuss the race issues in Junior's story.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

One cannot discuss the themes of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian without discussing race and racism. When Junior attends Reardan, he encounters a lot of racism. Not only does he deal with microaggressions and racist comments from his white classmates and the father of Penelope, the girl he likes, he also notes that Reardan's school mascot is an Indian. Furthermore, on a systemic level, racism and the attempted genocide of the Native peoples of North America are direct reasons for the way Junior and his family live: on a reservation, stricken by poverty and alcoholism. These are remnants of the systemic violence against a entire population.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
Soaring plane image

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial