Sherman Alexie, of Spokane and Coeur d'Arlene heritage, is one of the best known Native American writers of our time, recipient of various prestigious awards for his unique and often humorous perspectives on the lives of Native Americans, on and off reservation.

Starting with his YA semi-autobiographical "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" (2007), we will explore the rich world of Alexie's short stories and hope to gain a better understanding of what it means to be of indigenous descent in the contemporary USA. We will also include a few poems and two Native American movies based on screenplays written by Alexie (Smoke Signals & The Business of Fancydancing).

This course is particularly useful for students who want to become teachers as you may want to introduce some of those stories to your high school students as a means of dealing with stereotypical thinking about Native Americans.