Dead but Alive
Dead but Alive
Sherman is a Native American teenager who names himself as Zits. He is half Irish and Half Indian, who never recognized his alcoholic father while his mom passed away when he was only six. The aspect of ethnicity enables him to acknowledge stigma associated with being a Native American. He notices that minorities affect opinion based on one’s background, and everyone is fixed with a different ideology that is particular to a given ethnic group. He learns a lot more about his people and family when he notices that there is a lie about his history. A lot of questions tickle in his mind whether his father was an Indian whom he never knew (Sherman Alexie).
Chapter one brings an incident where he wakes up in a foster home disliking his new family. He violently pushes his foster mother against the wall and escapes out. The aspect of ethnicity also emerges during the flashback where Alexie presumes the role of FBI Agent Hank Storm. He witnesses an incident with two Indians who were involved with ARON. Zits witness his colleague kill an Indian for being unable to retrieve information from him. The death of the innocent Indian forces him to shoot the corpse. The events turn around when Hank is forced to fire bullets at Corpse even though he already dead to have himself responsible for the murder.
While thinking what to do Zits, he transforms again into another character known as Gus. This is known as Indian Tracker that has to lead to an Indian camp. The character Gus is trained for hunting and tracking down Indians. Zits on the contrary to Gus’s actions forces himself to avoid attacking the Indians. He assists Small Saint and Bow-Boy to escape the wrath of advancing cavalry. Finally, Zits takes the role of his father. He starts to realize why his father abandoned his mother. He also starts to realize neither loved him and for abandoning him, his father was doing his best to his son.
After being kicked out by his aunt who adopted him when he was only ten years, his aunt kicks him out for setting her boyfriend who was sleeping on fire. We learn that the boyfriend had been compelling him to have sex. It forms the basis for the aunt takes such action against him. He starts smoking, drinking, stealing cars. He ends up in jail for shooting many people in the bank after getting brainwashed as narrated by (Alexie).
Contrary to the initial incident shooting in the bank, the final chapter brings another incident when he relives the scene and matches out without hurting anyone. Using the twist of events here, the author implies a change of mind for the ultimate good. The author implies that crime is not the solution to problems and could affect more people than just him. In the last chapter, Officer Dave’s brother and his wife Mary adopts Zits (Alexie). Officer Dave acknowledges that he has to help Zits, and the brother agrees to stay with him. Finally, Zits acknowledges that can put his trust on the family where he feels at home.
The incident where Mary calls Zits as Michael signifies a rebirth of Zits. It signifies a complete transformation and a total change in the life of Zits after undergoing very harsh treatment in his teenage age. The novel is very interesting making you laugh through tears. He author has given an interesting narration that really captures the reader. Personally, I have liked the novel.
Berglund, Jeff, and Jan Roush. Sherman Alexie. Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2010. Print.
Alexie, Sherman. Flight. New York: Black Cat, 2007. Print.
Alexie, Sherman. ‘Cline’. Callaloo 17.1 (1994): 17. Web.
Alexie, Sherman. ‘Why We Play Basketball’. College English 58.6 (1996): 709. Web.