Adventures of an Indian Princess, Analysis Essay

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John Fassero, Ethnic Studies 151, Fall 2013 Professor Duane Bigeagle Analysis of “Adventures of an Indian Princess”, By Patricia Riley The feelings and emotions that make this a powerful and thought-provoking story on stereotyping and general ethnic insensitivity are carried primarily as the author provides you with the internal narrative dialogue and careful observation of a young Cherokee girl named Arletta. Much is communicated without a spoken word by her throughout the essay. Much is said in a one sentence reply to her foster mother at the close of the story. As the central character and protagonist, Arletta finds herself sandwiched between her foster sisters on a car trip, with Jackson Rapier at the helm and wife by…show more content…
Arletta is immediately unimpressed when greeted by what is a mascot of a Cherokee Indian chief, wearing a cacophony of different tribal wardrobe items, nothing of which being Cherokee. Indeed, the hot sun confirms the masquerade as it melts the brown makeup which seems to form a war stripe to do battle with the entire Cherokee nation culture. This all amounts to an insult to her intelligence and cultural identity, but through her own sense of survival, she wisely thinks through the situation and manages to retain a sense of placidity. She clearly demonstrated this character trait when literally pushed to the side of this mascot Indian Trading post chief for a ‘pitcher’, to cope she simply mashes her teeth with a visible grimace. But she does retain her dignity nonetheless by not complying with the ‘clever’ demands by Jackson Rapier to say ‘Cherokee’ during the photo shoot. This ability to think beyond the immediate circumstances is present throughout Arletta’s dreadful adventure to the trading post. The inspiration for the title element “Indian Princess” came when Mrs. Rapier reacts to her husband’s photo opportunity with the trading post chief, noting that she resembled an Indian Princess further establishes the Rapiers

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