Sherman Alexie: Indian Killer

(807 words)
  • Martin Kich

In his second novel, Indian Killer, Alexie exploits elements of the mystery genre to show how easily the frontier stereotypes of the Native American as a savage, or as a ruthless killer, can be resurrected from their supposed resting places in the museum vaults of the national memory. Playing off the 19th-century conception of the frontier hero as an Indian killer, the title refers to a serial killer who terrorizes Seattle by scalping his victims and thereby threatens to undermine the civil order of the city. Critics have observed that in this novel Alexie seems not only to be searching for a middle ground between serious and popular fiction, but also to be consciously trying to appeal to both Anglo-American and …

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Kich, Martin. "Indian Killer". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 08 December 2007
[, accessed 02 July 2015.]

Related Groups

  1. Native American and Canadian Writing