Louise Erdrich’s “The Red Convertible” was first published in 1984 as part of Love Medicine, a short story collection detailing the fictional lives of several multi-generational Ojibwe families. In “The Red Convertible,” brothers Lyman and Henry Junior grapple with the effects of Henry Junior’s traumatic experience in the Vietnam War and their subsequent loss of innocence. Love Medicine was the recipient of the 1984 National Book Critics Circle Award. It has been updated and rereleased twice, in 1993 and 2009.


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See a complete list of the characters in “The Red Convertible” and in-depth analyses of Lyman and Henry Junior.

Literary Devices

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Deeper Study

Enhance your understanding of “The Red Convertible” by learning about Louise Erdrich and historical context for the study.