himself did. For example, in the essay “Superman and Me”, Alexie tells his readers that “I fought with my classmates on a daily basis” (Alexie). He had fights with his classmates was because they did not want him to answer any questions that were asked by non-Indian teachers and to stay quiet because he was Indian. He also read and read books whenever he got a chance. Additionally, in this essay “Superman and Me”, Alexie presents himself as forceful. I believe Alexie is forceful because he does not care what other people think of him and he gets and does what he wants. For example, in this essay he tells his readers that “I refused to fail. I was smart. I was arrogant. I was lucky” (Alexie). Through “Superman and Me” we can see that his childhood was not really good, so when he was growing up he became forceful in a nice way to get what he wants, which is to help younger generations of Indian to succeed in in life through reading and writing. Overall, I believe that “Superman and Me” is really well written and is well organized. I really did not have a hard time following the essay or reading it. Alexie showed his readers that if you want to be something, you can be, even if people are looking down at you.
“Superman and Me” is an article by Sherman Alexie that addresses his early experiences with literature. Illiteracy is a huge issue in some lower class groups. Alexie states that, as a Spokane child, his future would likely consist of minimum wage jobs (Alexie 89). The author portrays literacy as a method of escaping these circumstances. In “Superman and Me”, Alexie describes how he gains his ability to read and write. He begins his journey to literacy in the most unlikely of places: a Superman comic book. The author explains that his reading trials expanded beyond those colorful pages, and allowed him to read the novels his father brought home. Clearly, the fact that he was surrounded by literature seems to have led to him becoming literate.
These efforts led to hardships. Cultural expectations of Native Americans challenged him throughout his childhood. It is amazing that he had so many of these struggles as a child. Regarding the time he spent in class, the author notes, “We were Indian children who were expected to be stupid” (90). Alexie describes his classmates as being brighter outside of the classroom. This contradiction is puzzling. It seems as though the children are seeking to fulfill a role expected of them by the mainstream. It would take a strange kind of culture to disapprove of reading and learning. Still, Alexie disregards such negative influences.
The story is painting a bigger picture, as far as literacy goes. Just as Superman breaks through the door to his target, Alexie does so as well. The breaking of the door represents a mental breakthrough. Instead of superpowers, Alexie has knowledge. He knows that literature can open the door to new opportunities. This is why he wishes so strongly for those failing students to strive for more; they can become something more than Spokane reservation kids. Works Cited
Alexie, Sherman. “Superman and Me.” The McGraw-Hill Guide: Writing for College, Writing for Life (Student Edition): Duane Roen, Gregory Glau, Barry Maid.