Love Medicine | Study Guide

Louise Erdrich

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Course Hero. "Love Medicine Study Guide." Course Hero. 3 Jan. 2019. Web. 5 June 2020. <>.

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Course Hero. (2019, January 3). Love Medicine Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved June 5, 2020, from

In text

(Course Hero, 2019)



Course Hero. "Love Medicine Study Guide." January 3, 2019. Accessed June 5, 2020.


Course Hero, "Love Medicine Study Guide," January 3, 2019, accessed June 5, 2020,



Louise Erdrich

Year Published






Perspective and Narrator

Love Medicine includes a variety of perspectives and narrators. In some sections characters narrate in the third person while in other chapters characters narrate in the first person. The author's decision to use multiple voices suits the novel's content, which is concerned with several generations of a family.


Love Medicine is narrated in the past tense.

About the Title

The novel's multiple protagonists share Chippewa Native American blood, and "love medicine" refers to the Native American idea that sex and nurturing relationships have powerful healing powers. It also relates to the concept of a healer or spiritual worker as a medicine man or woman. In the text Rushes Bear uses "love medicine" to envelop her husband Nanapush in a sexual relationship. It also refers to the spell Lipsha Morrissey uses, which is a "love medicine" spell, to try to bring Marie and Nector Kashpaw closer together despite Nector's extramarital affair with Lulu Lamartine.


This study guide for Louise Erdrich's Love Medicine offers summary and analysis on themes, symbols, and other literary devices found in the text. Explore Course Hero's library of literature materials, including documents and Q&A pairs.

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