Notes on Literature

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Part I Jackson Jackson is an intelligent, articulate homeless man of Native American ancestry. He acutely feels the injustices of colonization, even describing his physical appearance as tainted, because he looks like a 'before Columbus' Indian versus his more magisterial-looking friend. He still has a profound connection to his heritage, as manifested in his desire to win back his grandmother's regalia. He also had a fondness for drinking. Jackson's sense of 'disappearing' relates to the fact that so many Indians in Seattle are homeless, displaced, drunk, and depressed. He feels he has no distinguishing characteristics. People seem to look right through him, and even though he has a moral right to regain his grandmother's regalia, the pawn shop owner refuses to give it back to him, because he knows the law is on his side and will not trust Jackson. Jackson becomes fixated on the notion that he can win back the regalia, and feels he needs to do so like a hero on a quest, rather than filing a complaint through the law. Jackson's ability to regain the regalia, through a series of improbable events and twists of fate affirms his connection with his Indian heritage and the possibility of something good happening in the future. It is a way of bringing back his grandmother and himself to life again. The pawn shop owner's decision to return the regalia to Jackson feels like divine intervention, an honoring of Jackson's struggles. Along the quest Jackson learns about the
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