The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian | Study Guide

Sherman Alexie

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Course Hero. "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Study Guide." Course Hero. 12 Dec. 2016. Web. 17 July 2018. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Absolutely-True-Diary-of-a-Part-Time-Indian/>.

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Course Hero. (2016, December 12). The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved July 17, 2018, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Absolutely-True-Diary-of-a-Part-Time-Indian/

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Course Hero. "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Study Guide." December 12, 2016. Accessed July 17, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Absolutely-True-Diary-of-a-Part-Time-Indian/.

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Course Hero, "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Study Guide," December 12, 2016, accessed July 17, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Absolutely-True-Diary-of-a-Part-Time-Indian/.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian | Chapter 10 : Tears of a Clown | Summary

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Summary

Junior reflects on his first crush at 12—a Native American girl named Dawn. She was a tall, gifted, powwow dancer with legendary braids. Dawn didn't return his affections; she made fun of him instead. Junior figures he'll always fall in love with uninterested girls.

Junior confessed his love for Dawn to Rowdy one night. Rowdy said Dawn didn't care about him, and Junior cried—Rowdy thinks Junior's always cried too easily, which makes him weak. Junior makes Rowdy promise not to tell anyone he cried about Dawn. Rowdy never did.

Analysis

This brief chapter reminds the reader of the depth and history of Junior and Rowdy's friendship. They know things about each other no one else does, and Rowdy's tough honesty contrasts with Junior's on-the-surface emotions in a way that helps them both. Part of growing up, for Junior, will be breaking away from his dependence on Rowdy.

Tears are "weak," Junior says, "the opposite of warrior." Emotional stoicism is a quality Junior sees as masculine, and he's afraid to admit his feelings to himself. Like college and hope, girls seem out of Junior's reach. He hopes a new identity can mean new luck with girls, but based on Penelope's actions in the last chapter, Junior may not get his wish.

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