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Ceremony Paper


Submitted By geraldmcdonald1
Words 2078
Pages 9
In Ceremony, Tayo embodies the combination of both Native American and white cultures. Taking on two cultures makes Tayo bear the effect of a whole society’s confusion at the ways in which the world is changing. Tayo encounters difficulty in identifying his identity, especially since he never knew his father and he was abandoned by his mother at the age of four. He is raised by his aunt who constantly reminds him of his difference. Tayo is educated by a predominately ran white school. However, unlike his friends, he often finds the white ways of life damaged and continues to respect and believe in the Native American traditions that he learns from his family. However, even though Tayo views the white ways of life faulty, he learns that he has to embrace the American culture in order to reflect back to his Native American culture. This explanation is what Tayo learns about being an American. Furthermore, World War II interrupts Tayo's life drastically as it does to most Americans of his generation. The majority of the Native American men who return from World War II turn to alcohol to drown their trauma, which is full of confused anger. More specifically, Tayo along with his cousin Rocky were in World War II. Rocky was killed in war and Tayo became emotionally disturbed. Tayo was more violent when he came back from war. He was disoriented and changed by the foreign culture of war. His aunt who watches over him is still in shock and continues to change the sheets for her two sons that died in the war and she still has Tayo to sleep in Rocky’s room. This is all strange to Tayo and he feels misplaced because he knows he is no replacement for the loss of his aunt’s real sons. Tayo, throughout the novel, is more sad than angry. He is painfully affected of the ways in which Native Americans were and are mistreated by whites. This brings up the conversation about the

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