This changes the significance of the title and gives it new meaning In addition

This changes the significance of the title and gives

This preview shows page 5 - 6 out of 6 pages.

meaning. In addition to a chest piece of least value, the word pawn can be taken to mean something used to further the purpose of another. This is significant when taken in context with Jackson’s cultural history of assimilation that began with Colonialism and continues to be both a cultural and social issue for contemporary Native Americans.The quest to buy back the stolen regalia then takes on new meaning and further reveals the complexity of Sherman Alexie’s choice of title for the story. Jackson is not simply trying to buy back the regalia; he is trying to win it back, to redeem it. In this light the quest can be seen as Jackson’s effort to atone for his past life, to make something better of himself. In the end winning back the regalia is an act of redemption. But the power of the title does not stop there. Throughout the story Jackson has proven that everything can be used to further the purpose of another, be it him or those around him, for drink and food. There is nothing to stop Jackson fromturning around and pawning his grandmother’s regalia. The title then reveals an irony in that what Jackson redeems he can also pawn.The effect the title has on Sherman Alexie’s short story is evident from beginning to end and forms a critical element in establishing the story’s narrative foundation. As a foundation the title established a set of expectations for what the story should be and as such the title is a success. It set the stage, allowing events to unfold, characters to perform, and the articulation of the author’s unique perspective on Native American culture.
Background image
THE LITERARY ANALYSIS 2ReferencesAlexie, S. (2003). What You Pawn I Will Redeem. New Yorker Magazine. Retrieved from Clugston, R. W. (2014). Journey into literature (2nd Ed.) [Electronic version]. Retrieved from Maltzman, I. (2008). Alcoholism: Its treatments and mistreatments. Hackensack, N.J.: World Scientific, c2008.Joshi, D. M. (2015). Influence of Indian cultural heritage on world heritage.
Background image

You've reached the end of your free preview.

Want to read all 6 pages?

  • Summer '09
  • O'DONNELL
  • Literature, The Lottery, Native Americans in the United States, Sherman Alexie, Williams Jackson

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture