Mrs. La Fleur
ELA 8 PAP, period 5
May 11, 2018
THINK OF TITLE!
Navajos. Who were the Navajos and what is their importance? Navajos were Native Americans, discriminated because of their skin color before and after World War 2. However, they were very crucial to the war. Joseph Bruchac was a Navajo himself and didn’t fight in the war, but he may have felt the same pain as those before and after the war. He wrote a book called Code Talker to tell people about the struggles and the war that the Navajos had to face. Joseph Bruchac’s cultural background affected how he wrote the novel.
Joseph Bruchac was born on October 16, 1942 in Saratoga Springs, New York. He grew up in Greenfield Center, New York, raised by his grandparents from his mom’s side. Abenaki is his tribal heritage and he and his family try to preserve this culture. He wrote a variety of genres such as fiction and poetry. He mainly wrote about the problems about being an American. He went to Africa and saw the suffering the people in Africa were going through and how much we Americans were taking for granted. “He has a B.A. in Cornell University, an M.A. in Literature and Creative Writing from Syracuse, and a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the Union Institute of Ohio.” (Joseph Bruchac Storyteller ; Writer). He is an author, writing countless pieces of text but also edited many famous poetries and fictions. “Joseph Bruchac has earned a reputation as one of the foremost storytellers working in America.” (Joseph Bruchac III). He told his sons the stories that he knew when he was growing up but started to run out of stories. So, he decided to go find some more and when he did, he told them to many people and began traveling around telling stories. “He discusses Native culture and his books and does storytelling programs at dozens of elementary and secondary schools each year as a visiting author.”(Joseph Bruchac Storyteller ; Writer). He is a great influence on those children and can inspire them to be like him. As Bankston said “‘Joseph Bruchac,’ he concludes, ‘is one of the true storytellers’ ” (Joseph Bruchac III).
Joseph Bruchac was fascinated by now the Navajos played a big role in World War 2. Because he was born during WWII, he was curious and wanted to learn about the war. His uncle, Jimmy James Smith Jr, was a Navajo marine and his aunt was an army nurse during the war. “The conversations I’ve had with Uncle Jim about his experiences in the war and the information he shared with me helped me understand what it was like on those grim and distant islands where the Marine Corps was the first to land. His uncle saw the code talkers as important people and never knew what they did until after the war.” (Bruchac 219). To write this book, he went through years of research and research and finally published it. Because he was a Navajo and because his family was involved with the war, he grew to understand it and saw interest in it to write this book.
Some people may think he was being biased when he was writing the book, but I don’t think so. All the events did happen, and he thoroughly researched it. Some of the information was from his uncle, but everything is factual. Most of the characters were real and he tried his best to make it as accurate as possible. “When they were drunk, they no longer could think of those things. Some of our Navajo code talkers joined in that heavy drinking. After the war, they still kept on with tat drinking to try to keep that terrible world of war out of their minds.” (Bruchac 139). He knew that the Navajos and veterans who fought in the war would continue drinking and he found that out by asking the Navajos himself. He put no opinion in the book except maybe the character names but the book in general is very accurate. “There’s still a lot of history in this story and I’ve done my best to keep it accurate. Even though my main character and narrator is fictitious, I haven’t invented events.” (Bruchac 223).
An author will write about what they know about and the experiences they have gone through. They base their writing on what they feel and how familiar they are with. They can express their emotions strongly and can be very passionate about it. Because Joseph Bruchac was very interested, he researched and put all his emotions onto paper while still being accurate and factual.
Code Talker was a book about Navajos during WWII. Joseph Bruchac, the author of this book, was a Navajo himself and decided to write this book. He wanted to tell people about what the Navajos did and the importance of their lives. Because he was a Navajo, it affected his way of writing this book.