As humans we are united in the common story that is life, though each story may vary we still strive to figure out our place in the world and just what we may do with our time on it. This semest
er we have read many novels about people’s lives and asked how if might we handle the scenarios both from our point of view and the persons in the story. For myself and my classmates this was a challenge due to the natures of the books weve read. Nor i or my classmates have any experience in being an x-slave mother forced to make hard family decisions but nevertheless be continued in our journey into the worlds of these novels Toward the end of the semester we read 3 final books, lolita, ceremony, and the crying of lot 49 and i will be breaking down the moral and ethical questions asked by leslie Silko in her book ceremony. This book resonated with me the most of all books, mainly because i can relate to a young P.O.C who i trying to both be successful and do right by his heritage.
Simply put being a different color makes you different. my friends tell me all the time that race is only a construct of our own mind, but the looks and side comments made by strangers make me doubtful. Whether we as people want to believe it or not we have history and stake in the idea that people with different skin colors are unlike people with the same skin color. Most people believe they are showing no indifference when dealing with someone of another skin color but this is rarely true because like all humans we see and perceive information, we bring whatever we think and feel to the conversations rather that be good, bad, or misguided. As an example i’ll use the army recruiter from the story of ceremony, while the recruiter is talking to the boys he drops a line where he says …i already know how much you boys love america which more than likely is a underhanded joke toward the feelings native americans have against america. This is the true face of racism now, a presumption from your own corner of the world where you believe something as fact. The recruiter in his mind has every idea that native men in front of him more than likely don’t like america because he believes all natives dislike america and this is truely how P.O.C feel. Being told to conform more as a prerequisite for simple things is the american way. Tayo is a young man striving to be the best he can be but is at odds with how he is viewed by society, its hard to find out who you are when people feel that they already know you.
Tayos journey in america is complicated because of his mixed descent, he internally is conflicted with his need to do right by his ancestors and also by his country, burying the hatchet is hard when its the last one of your people. Silko implies during the novel Ceremony, that people cannot exist without any connection to nature and land. When america distances themselves from these concepts they become lost and sick individuals. Once far enough way, one has no sense of community and the only outcome to finding one’s self is by escaping back to nature and connecting with the circle of life. Tayo after returning from World War II suffers from serious mental and physical illness brought on by the horricif things hes seen and done. He has lost the sense of belonging and feels separated from the community after returning from the war. Tayo visits a medicine man who tells him he needs to connect with the land once more. Shortly after he finds himself and develop deep meaningful relationships which will gave his life a purpose. Silko creates a metaphor that when main character has illness, everything in his world has illness, plants, animals, and the land. Tayo functions as the he metaphorical ruler of his land, once he heals, everything else around him will heals also and his outlook on life and his heritage becomes more relaxed. Tayo’s difficult journey through has many hardships and many factors contribute to what makes him uneasy.
As a man with ties to both Native American and white cultures, Tayo offers a critique of both societies as well as a message of reform, that the difference we see can be overcame.