The Surrounded by D'Arcy McNickle is aptly named for many reasons, and the meaning is many layers deep.
First of all, the entire plot of the novel is rather circular, and of course that is a literal kind of surrounding. Mixed-race Archilde Leon is the protagonist of the novel, and he is constantly torn between his European and Native American cultures. He left the reservation and has been making a living as a musician in Portland, but when he returns home he finds himself rather ensnared by the strings of his former life and culture.
Every time he tries to leave again, he is unable to do so. He came for this last visit to say farewell to his father; however, he consistently finds himself drawn back into the culture he had left and tried hard to forget. As he continues to search for his cultural identity, he is surrounded by reminders in all kinds of ways.
Archilde re-connects with nature, one of the strongest protectors the Native Americans have, when he sees the bird and does not see the...
(The entire section contains 600 words.)