How does Love Medicine fit into the postmodernist category?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that Erdich's novel fits into a postmodern designation in a couple of ways.  The first is through her style.  Erdich does not write with a singular voice or a single narrative guiding the work.  Instead, the voices shift, the narratives change, and there is a sense of multiple angles of perception being presented to the reader.  Concerned with relocating "the center" and bringing in as many voices as possible from margin to focal point, postmodernism finds a home in this idea.  This "deconstruction" of reality and seeking to provide different approaches to truth and certainty are both realities in Erdich's work and in postmodernism.  Additionally, the fact that Erdich is presenting a work from a Native American view point that is about Native Americans is another element of postmodern thought, a movement that concerns itself with the crisis of representation.  The presentation of characters who struggle with both maintaining their own sense of cultural relevancy as well as their own individual identity is another aspect of postmodern thought, where the "decentered self" is of vital importance.

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