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Ceremony

Silko, Leslie Marmon (Book - 2006)
Average Rating: 3 stars out of 5.
Ceremony
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This story, set on an Indian reservation just after World War II, concerns the return home of a war-weary Navaho young man. Tayo, a young Native American, has been a prisoner of the Japanese during World War II, and the horrors of captivity have almost eroded his will to survive. His return to the Laguna Pueblo reservation only increases his feeling of estrangement and alienation. While other returning soldiers find easy refuge in alcohol and senseless violence, Tayo searches for another kind of comfort and resolution. Tayo's quest leads him back to the Indian past and its traditions, to beliefs about witchcraft and evil, and to the ancient stories of his people. The search itself becomes a ritual, a curative ceremny that defeats the most virulent of afflictions-despair. "Demanding but confident and beautifully written" (Boston Globe), this is the story of a young Native American returning to his reservation after surviving the horrors of captivity as a prisoner of the Japanese during World War II. Drawn to his Indian past and its traditions, his search for comfort and resolution becomes a ritual--a curative ceremony that defeats his despair.
Authors: Silko, Leslie Marmon, 1948-
Title: Ceremony
Publisher: New York : Penguin Books, c2006
Edition: 30th anniversary ed
Characteristics: xxiii, 243 p. ;,22 cm
Statement of Responsibility: Leslie Marmon Silko ; introduction by Larry McMurtry ; with a new preface by the author
Notes: Originally published: New York : The Viking Press, 1977. With new preface by author
Summary: This story, set on an Indian reservation just after World War II, concerns the return home of a war-weary Navaho young man. Tayo, a young Native American, has been a prisoner of the Japanese during World War II, and the horrors of captivity have almost eroded his will to survive. His return to the Laguna Pueblo reservation only increases his feeling of estrangement and alienation. While other returning soldiers find easy refuge in alcohol and senseless violence, Tayo searches for another kind of comfort and resolution. Tayo's quest leads him back to the Indian past and its traditions, to beliefs about witchcraft and evil, and to the ancient stories of his people. The search itself becomes a ritual, a curative ceremny that defeats the most virulent of afflictions-despair. "Demanding but confident and beautifully written" (Boston Globe), this is the story of a young Native American returning to his reservation after surviving the horrors of captivity as a prisoner of the Japanese during World War II. Drawn to his Indian past and its traditions, his search for comfort and resolution becomes a ritual--a curative ceremony that defeats his despair.
ISBN: 9780143104919
0143104918
Branch Call Number: FICTION SILKO
Subject Headings: Laguna Indians Fiction World War, 1939-1945 Veterans Fiction
Genre/Form: Western stories
Topical Term: Laguna Indians
World War, 1939-1945
LCCN: 2006050705
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From Library Staff

Silko's novel 'Almanac of the Dead' is included on another booklist of mine, but start with this, her first novel about a young Navajo war veteran who struggles with his tradition, demons, and the changing environment for Native Americans in the 20th century. Highly recommended.

This story, set on an Indian reservation just after World War II, concerns the return home of a war-weary Navaho young man. Tayo, a young Native American, has been a prisoner of the Japanese during World War II, and the horrors of captivity have almost eroded his will to survive. His return to th... Read More »

Follows the story of a World War II veteran, half-Navajo, half-White, who tries to re-assimilate himself into Navajo society.


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Dec 09, 2013
  • Library_Dragon rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Read this book for a class in college and loved it. Terrific lyrical writing. Marmon is one of my fave Native American authors, right up there with Sherman Alexie.

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