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Reservation Blues

            In the book Reservation Blues by Sherman Alexie the issue of hunger is so prominent it is impossible to ignore. The characters are all greatly affected by hunger. But it is not only hunger that affects these characters, but depravation from appealing food and the feeling of having earned the food as well. Physical hunger is not the only type of hunger these characters are forced to endure; they are also hungry for emotional fulfillment in their lives as well. The characters in Reservation Blues, because of the poverty in their lives are all forced to eat Government Issue food and because of that the people are often only shadows of themselves. .
             The first example of how hunger and the depravation from appealing food comes on page 12. Alexie writes of the Trading Post, " Its shelves were stocked with reservation staples: Diet Pepsi, Spam, Wonder bread- (12). To me this shows exactly what the characters in the book consume. These food items are not nutritious or satisfying, they are only unhealthy fillings that will leave a person hungry soon after eating them. These foods are also the lowest foods one can have. The government gives to worst food possible to the people who originally developed some of the best foods, like corn. This shows me that the government did not provide nutritious foods for the people. The government is in complete control over what the characters in Reservation Blues get to eat. And when people are being told what to eat, they feel like they are not free, like they are imprisoned on their reservation. .
             Another thing about these items that could be found in the Trading Post on the Spokane reservation is that they are very mainstream "white" all-American foods. By this I mean these foods in particular are very symbolic in American culture and to me they are a sign of white America, not what one would think to find on a reservation. By this I mean even the food of white America is suppressing the Native Americans.

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