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By Catherine Rainwater

In goals of Fiery Stars, Catherine Rainwater examines the novels of writers equivalent to Momaday, Linda Hogan, Leslie Marmon Silko, Gerald Vizenor, and Louise Erdrich and contends that the very act of writing narrative imposes constraints upon those authors which are overseas to local American culture. Their works quantity to a holiday with -- and a metamorphosis of -- American Indian storytelling.The e-book specializes in the schedule of social and cultural regeneration encoded in modern local American narrative, and addresses key questions about how those works in attaining their openly acknowledged political and revisionary goals. Rainwater explores the ways that the writers create readers who comprehend the relationship among storytelling and private and social transformation; considers how modern local American narrative rewrites Western notions of house and time; examines the lifestyles of intertextual connections among local American works; and appears on the very important position of local American literature in mainstream society at the present time.

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Extra info for Dreams of Fiery Stars: The Transformations of Native American Fiction

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By the end of the novel, her plan has worked. When federal marshals come to arrest her for assisting a fugitive (a charge that will not stick), Lulu, dressed beautifully in ceremonial garb, cries out a "victory yell" (265). On the scene to snap pictures of her in her "planned" victory are the media: "All of the North Dakota newspapers" will unwittingly publish photos of Lulu's victory and perhaps contribute to the further advancement of her scheme (264). Lulu's snare begins with a carefully placed picture in her apartment, along with a copy of it deliberately given to Lipsha.

Moreover, Erdrich further manages her audience through skilled deployment of the counter-colonial trope, a type of "hook" that snags an attentive reader, not only while reading The Bingo Palace, but possibly forever after. Adept readers, unlike Lipsha in Fleur's cabin, learn with the help of narrative cues to decode the "sentence" in which they are immersed; moreover, under Erdrich's "spell," such readers are also profoundly affected by her unique management of the ethnic sign. Implied throughout The Bingo Palace in the multiply nuanced trope of ensnarement (photographs, webs, nets, and sewn and beaded garments) is the notion that stories contained in verbal and visual designs can change the world, beginning with the perceptual and interpretive habits of readers.

The careless reader is virtually ensnared in the view or vision of the world implied in the pattern, while the careful reader sees "the snare . . the invisible loop hidden in the . . words" (185) and begins to develop a more epistemologically sophisticated, larger vision of "reality" as a socially constructed, malleable phenomenon. Like Lulu, Zelda Kashpaw and Fleur "Mindemoya" Pillager are powerful old women who have learned how to entangle others in their snares. Zelda "scans" Lipsha's mind with the "sudden zerogaze" of a "medical machine," and she "reads" the "map of [his] feelings" before she weaves her own design around him (18).

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