In The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, how is Junior's lack of self-esteem in himself and his culture worse than his poverty?

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Junior's lack of self-esteem in himself and his culture is worse than economic poverty because failure to believe in his identity means he will never see a world where he can be a "bright and shining star."

The conversation that he and Mr. P share is one of the most important moments in Junior's life.  The conversation was so powerful because of the passion with which Mr. P speaks.  He wants Junior to want something better for his life.  Mr. P talks to Junior about how there is a part of his identity that refuses "to give up."  The teacher argues that the reason why Junior hurled the book was because part of him still believes that he is destined for something better. Mr. P says that Junior can be a "bright and shining star" only if he leaves the reservation. He warns Junior that if he stays on the reservation, his hope will be broken and, like so many others, he will give up.  Junior says that listening to Mr. P and thinking about what he said caused him to feel that "life...

(The entire section contains 543 words.)

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