73 pages 2 hours read

Leslie Marmon Silko


Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 1977

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Reading Questions & Paired Texts

Reading Check and Short Answer questions on key points are designed for guided reading assignments, in-class review, formative assessment, quizzes, and more.

Pages 1-67

Reading Check

1. Who are the World War II veterans on the reservation?

2. What do the veterans use to self-medicate?

3. What did Tayo curse for Rocky’s death?

4. What does Emo keep as a souvenir?

Short Answer

Answer each question in at least 1 complete sentence. Incorporate details from the text to support your response.

1. Why does Emo hate Tayo? How does his attitude toward Tayo compare to the attitude of other Laguna Pueblo?

2. Why can’t Ku’oosh help Tayo?

3. What happens when warriors don’t participate in the Scalp Society, and what does this suggest about how the Laguna Pueblo view individual trauma?

Paired Resource

City of the Sick

  • This 1953 short documentary discusses the treatment of mental illness at the Columbus State Hospital post-WWII.
  • Content warning is added here for the documentary’s discussion and portrayal of electro-shock therapy and other controversial treatments used on people with mental health conditions, as well as offensive language used to describe neurodivergent people and people with mental health conditions.
  • This ties into the theme of Alienation and Isolation in Post-WWII America.
  • How does City of the Sick’s depiction of psychiatric treatment contrast with Tayo’s treatment in the veterans’ hospital? Why do you think this disconnect exists?

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