“Motorcycles and Sweetgrass” by Drew Hayden Taylor

Drew Hayden Taylor uses comic to explore community politics, intergenerational legacies, identity, and traditions in his book Motorcycles and Sweetgrass. I believe his primary theme is rational because it emphasizes the dire need to balance the modern world’s realities and culture. The author presents a troubled woman, Maggie, to demonstrate the challenges experienced by single mothers in fulfilling their parental duties and career ambitions in a cultural context. I enjoyed the creativity in the story owing to the depiction of humorous actions of Nanabush, the trickster, juxtaposed with the cultural issues and politics evident in the contemporary world.

The social criticisms in the book include the attempt to derail immigrants’ efforts to learn about their cultures and struggles they face. First, Lilian Benojee, Maggie’s mother, was sent to a residential school to ensure she does not acquire and understand the Indian traditions. Besides, Maggie engages in a significant scuffle with the government to regain band land borrowed from them. These examples demonstrate the tribulations experienced by non-natives due to their cultural backgrounds. It is wrong to subject the immigrants to unnecessary anguishes rather than embracing their different beliefs. In this regard, pluralism acts as a representation of the Canadian identity. The country welcomes and accommodates thousands of foreigners, which leads to the different cultural composition of the population. However, a concern exists regarding Canada’s multicultural policy as it may result in ethnic communities instead of assimilation of non-natives. I can relate the text with my visit to Iran, where many people are Muslim. It was challenging for me as a Christian because everyone seemed to perceive me as an outcast. I did not feel as if my culture was accepted and respected.

Notably, the author explores the problems experienced by immigrants in a foreign country. He uses the theme of balancing the cultural beliefs and realities of the modern world to demonstrate how individuals can overcome their life challenges. Consequently, Taylor’s work teaches people that it is essential to embrace diversity and accept people irrespective of their cultural beliefs. Irrefutably, the book is worth reading owing to its comic nature and juxtaposition of cultural and political issues experienced worldwide.

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