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The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian


by Sherman Alexie

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Hopes, Dreams, and Plans Quotes

How we cite our quotes: Citations for the text follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph); for art and illustrations: (Chapter.Illustration)

Quote #1

Seriously, I know my mother and father had their dreams when they were kids. They dreamed about being something other than poor, but they never got the chance to be anything because nobody paid attention to their dreams. (2.48)

As Arnold's drawing in figure 2.2 illustrates, his mom and dad had plenty of talents and dreams of their own. The problem is that they were never given the opportunity to make those dreams come true. Why didn't anyone notice the dreams of Arnold's parents? Why is it so important to be able to dream?

Quote #2

But we reservation Indians don't get to realize our dreams. We don't get those chances. Or choices. We're just poor. That's all we are. (2.52)

For Arnold, poverty is something that crushes your soul and crushes your dreams. How does poverty impact the ability of people to dream? How can hope get crushed?

Quote #3

He's a big, goofy dream, too, just like me. He likes to pretend he lives inside the comic books. I guess a fake life inside a cartoon is a lot better than his real life.

So I draw cartoons to make him happy, to give him other worlds to live inside.

I draw his dreams.

And he only talks about his dreams with me. And I only talk about my dreams with him. (3.118-3.121)

We know that Arnold and Rowdy are close because they share their dreams with each other. Their dreams are very different, though. Arnolds wants a different life outside of the reservation, while Rowdy is making do with living a "fake life" inside of his comic books. They both want to escape, but how are the ways in which Rowdy and Arnold want to escape actually very different?

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