Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in English Composition



First Advisor

Carlson, David

Second Advisor

Gil-Gomez, Ellen M.

Third Advisor

Lane, Suzanne


Examines the comic modes Sherman Alexie uses, the purposes behind his critical, yet humorous, commentary, the multiple audiences toward which his satire is aimed, and the desired outcomes of his satire. Explores the theme of alcoholism in Alexie's writings that plays a role in the degradation of Native American lives in modern times and why alcoholism has become a problem for the Native American community. Also, examines why Native Americans have become so dependent on White handouts and how this passivity and acceptance has created problems in Indian society. Finally, offers insights into Alexie's use of humor as a means of communicating hope, restoring community, and rebuilding tradition in Native American society.