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Characters in “Pawn Shop” by Alexie

Character development is vital in literature as it helps readers to understand their various aspects. One of the characters used by Alexie in Pawn Shop is Jackson. He is homeless, which limits his chances of being an active member of society. Jackson said, “one day you have a home and the next you don’t, but I’m not going to tell you my particular reasons for being homeless” (Alexie par. 1). Additionally, he has two friends, Rose of Sharon, who abandons him one day, and Junior, who dies in the back alley of a hotel. Thus, Jackson experiences many challenges after the death of his friend and the departure of Rose. However, he ensures that he improves his life by selling newspapers provided to him by the Big Boss. The latter helped Jackson by giving him fifty papers for free to guarantee that Jackson gained some funds. Therefore, Jackson ensured that he worked hard to overcome the boundaries imposed by society.

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Life of Tecumseh is nonfiction and has characters which can be analyzed. One of the characters is Tenskwatawa, who has challenges due to his vision impairment. Tenskwatawa became an alcoholic due to stress after accidentally injuring his eyes using a bow and arrows. He also nearly died from alcohol poisoning, which encouraged him to change his behavior. Tenskwatawa had a spiritual epiphany and ensured he started preaching that the native people should unite to reclaim what had been taken by white settlers. Additionally, he began a revival of Native-American religion to push against boundaries imposed by society. Tenskwatawa argues that Indian people can make themselves whole again by rejecting the worst influences white people have brought to them. Moreover, Tenskwatawa claimed that he was collecting warriors for holy purposes (Drake 87). Therefore, he is one of the characters which has revealed that people can focus on change and ensure that they contribute to society’s development despite facing challenges.


Alexie, Sherman. “What You Pawn I Will Redeem.” The New Yorker, 2003. Web.

Drake, Benjamin. Life of Tecumseh. Books on Demand, 2020.

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