University of Washington Tacoma

Access*: Interdisciplinary Journal of Student Research and Scholarship

Author Biography

Laurel is an Ultrasound Tech in Seattle, but academia called her back to finish her bachelors degree a few years ago. She majored in Arts, Media, and Culture, and is passionate about social justice issues.

Document Type

Undergraduate Research Paper


Author Louise Erdrich, a member of the Chippewa tribe in North Dakota, is renowned for addressing historical and current social justice issues facing Native Americans in many of her critically acclaimed novels. The Round House is no exception. Erdrich begins her novel by describing a violent attack against the young protagonist's mother; an attack that is only made possible by the systemic racism and lack of tribal sovereignty that underpins Federal Indian Law and policy. Erdrich transmutes the evil couched within those laws into one deplorable incident. The unfolding affects from that incident expose how-- not only historically, but even today-- lack of sovereignty results in communal trauma for Native Americans. In a series of deft metaphors, Erdrich repeatedly invokes the theme of haunting, rot, and infection to call out the body of laws that contemporary Federal Indian Policy.


University of Washington Tacoma


TLIT432 American Indian Literature


Danica Miller