The Symbol Of The Hurricane In “Every Little Hurricane”

Interpretation of symbols is key to understanding literary works. The use of symbols to convey specific messages and themes is known as symbolism. The use of symbols in literary works helps to convey deeper meanings than the normal meaning. Readers must be able think critically to interpret the meanings of symbols. Symbolism is a way for the reader of a literary work to understand the connection between symbols and themes. In Sherman Alexie’s book “Every Little Every Hurricane,” a hurricane symbolises all the bad that happens on Indian reservation, including violence and alcoholicism. These hurricanes cause a lot of damage. In Sherman Alexie’s “Every Little Hurricane”, the hurricane represents the dangers that victor’s parents and Indians on the reservation face.

The hurricane is a symbol of the wars that have torn apart Victor’s entire family. A hurricane is predicted by a weather report during the New Year’s celebrations. “The forecast wasn’t good. Indians continued drinking, and drank harder as if they were anticipating. There is a 50 percent chance for torrential downpours, blizzard like conditions and seismic activity. This passage suggests that the party guests will be affected by something (Sherman 1, p. 1). The party goers are drinking heavily. Adolph, Victor’s two uncles and Arnold begin fighting. A drunken party is the reason for the intensity of the fight. The party is over when there’s a fight. In this case, the author uses the hurricane to show that, even though everyone is trying to unite for the New Year Celebrations and that the community as a whole, there are always fights which break people apart. The fight between Victor and two of his uncles is a reference to the hurricane, as it threatens family unity. The narrator mentions that “in the morning, everything was fine but the Indians “the everlasting survivors” gathered and counted their losses. Family members fight and cause a lot pain. The hurricane of fights is a sign of poverty and the destruction of peace in the family. Victor flashbacks to his childhood Christmas Party. He is told by his father that he won’t have enough money to buy a gift for Christmas. The only Christmas tree they can afford is one with few ornaments. He cries as he watches his father’s empty wallet. Victor is affected by the hurricane of poverty. Victor is upset due to this hurricane. Poverty prevents the whole family from spending Christmas together. A bond is formed when children live in poverty. This bond is stronger than almost anything. This bond causes pain (Sherman, 2). This quote implies poverty is a cause of negative feelings and resentment. The hurricane represents these feelings. Poverty brings sadness to family members, and hurricanes symbolize that sadness. The poverty-driven hurricane has destroyed the happiness of Victor’s whole family.

The hurricane is a symbol of the pain and suffering that the Indians who live on reservations endure. These Indians are enraged by the suffering. The narrator explains that “one Indian killing another didn’t create a storm of a particular kind.” This generic little hurricane was a storm. It didn’t have a name.” (Sherman, 3). This quote indicates that Indians living in the reservation are prone to killing each other. Further, the narration explains that Indians have terrible memories. Victor’s Father, for example remembers a time when someone spat in his face as he waited to board a public bus. Victor’s Mother also remembers how Indian Health Services sterilized without her consent, when she had Victor. Victor’s older brothers also remember the struggles they had to face as children. The Indians who live on reservations are not immune to suffering. Indians who are victims by circumstance become resentful, angry and even violent.

The hurricane in Sherman Alexie’s “Every Little Hurricane”, symbolizes the threats to victor’s entire family as well as the Indians in the reservation. The story uses symbolism to evoke emotion in the readers. The story begins with a prediction of a hurricane. Victor’s memory of the Christmas Party shows another hurricane. It’s a personal storm. The family is unable to afford a tree for Christmas. The relationship of Victor’s parents can be represented by the large hurricane. The relationship highlights the sufferings of Indians on reservation. Symbolism highlights the sadness of Victor’s family. The hurricane symbolizes the suffering that the Indians endure on the reservation. The hurricane is a symbol of poverty, violence and suffering for the Indians living on the reservation. Victor is able to recall the tough times his family experienced. His father and mother, brothers, other tribesmen, and even his own family remember their suffering. The hurricane is introduced at the beginning of the book to symbolize the suffering and battles that will be part of the story. The hurricane represents the events that lead to the destruction of Victor’s family, and those of other Indians on the reservation.


  • ernestfarley

    Ernest is a 26-year-old education blogger and teacher who writes about a variety of topics related to teaching and learning. He has a passion for helping others learn and grow, and believes that education should be accessible to everyone. Ernest is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, and he has taught high school students in the United States, Mexico, and Chile.