Love Medicine

An Analysis of Love Medicine’s “Lulu” College

Lulu Nanapush Lamartine is a symbolic and admirable Chippewa Woman in Louise Erdrich’s Love Medicine. As a Native Woman character, Lulu reclaims and redefines space that is usually taken up by unjust stereotypes by using her shameless beauty and compassionate sexuality. Margaret Galloway argues that Lulu, as one of the most distinct female characters in Native American fiction is “the future of the Indian woman unrevealed and undefined...Since literature forms a very basic aspect of cultural experience the depiction of Indian Women should be of paramount importance.”[1] Lulu’s character breaks free of westernized norms that have impacted her community and culture. Lulu unapologetically lives a sensual and passionate life that satisfies parts of her feminine experience: lover, daughter, friend and political figure. As a feminist studying the representation of female characters in literature, I will analyze these specific roles in her life, explore how her lifestyle is not easily accepted by societal norms and clarify ways she reclaims space by working against patriarchal pressures.

Lulu As Lover

The societal norms that surround Lulu force judgment on her for her assumed sexual deviance. She tells us: “No one understood my wild...

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