Throughout Ceremony, the author, Leslie Silko, displays the internal struggle that the American Indians faced at that time in history. She displays this struggle between good and evil in several parts of the book. One is the myth explaining the orgin of the white man.
As common in Indian cultures they create a myth to explain why the white people came to them. The author begins to show the Indians feeling of hopelessness by showing in the myth, on pages 132 – 138, that there was no way the Indians could stop the white people from destroying the Indian culture. “Entire tribes will die out, covered with jestered sores, shitting blood, vomiting blood.” (pg. 137) The myth says that the white people will cause chaos, killing their people and taking their land. That is exactly what they ended up doing. The Indians are hopeless because there is nothing they could have done because according to the myth once the
Indians knew what was coming it was to late to stop it. “It’s already turned loose. It’s already coming. It can’t be called back.” (pg. 138) The White man killed many of the Indians through murder and disease. The few that were left were cramped on tiny reservations.
By reading this book you can see that the Native Americans live in extreme poverty. This is brought upon the Indians by the white man who gave them dry dusty desert land that he didn’t want. Then white men do not give the Indians a chance to get out of the poverty because he believes the Indians are good for nothings.
Many white people believe the myth that the Indians are drunken good for nothings. They believe this because to a certain point it is true. Many Indians do drink at bars but that is because they do not have much else to do because there is no good land to plant on and nothing to feed the cattle with. The white people had no respect for the Indians
Even Tayo himself believes in part of the stereotype. Before he thought a white man would steal his cattle he thought that an Indian or a Mexican would have done it. He himself believed in the lies that the white man has started about the Native Americans. Although he finally realizes what they are a learns to hate them. The lies about the Indians just hide the lies about the white man and Tayo believes that the lies will destroy the
Because of all this prejudice and the living conditions of the Indians they feel hopeless that they can not do anything to better their lives. Beign war veterans does not help it only make them feel worse. All they do is drink to try to get away from all of it.
In the end they end up destroying themselves. Because of all of the pain they were holding in. The only one of them who saw what was really happening was Tayo and he is the only one that makes it.
In Conclusion the author, Leslie Silko, displays the poverty and hopelessness that the Native Americans faced because of the white man. The Author elaborates this feeling of hopelessness in the Indians myth explaining the origin of the white man. As a result of the white man, Indians are forced to live in poverty on reservations that continuously reminds them of how the white man looks down at them. In the end all of the poverty, prejudice, and hopelessness makes the Indians turn on themselves. Thus, reinforcing how worthless the white people, and even Indians, themselves, feel the Indians’ lives are.