Name Surname Supervisor Subject Date Family Conflict in Alice Walker’s “Everyday Use” Written in1973, Alice Walker’s “Everyday Use” foregrounds the conflict within an African American family. The short story portrays Mama, a single mother, and her relationship with her daughters, Dee and Maggie…
Indeed, the difference between the sisters explains why Mama places much hope in Dee and puts her in the path of success while Maggie remains home, uneducated and lame. Nevertheless, by the end of the play, Mama realizes her mistake and redeems her docile and valuable daughter. The short story points out not only the difference between Dee and Maggie, but also Mama’s relationship with each of her children. The contrast between Dee and Maggie is overwhelming and reflects their different personalities. Mama, as the narrator of the story, dramatizes the difference even more: “Have you ever seen a lame animal, perhaps a dog run over by some careless person rich enough to own a car, sidle up to someone who is ignorant enough to be kind to him? That is the way my Maggie walks” (Walker 121). This pitiful description is the image Mama has about her daughter. Injured when the house they used to live in burnt down, Maggie still carries the impact of the accident with her. Mama explains her physical difference from her sister: “Dee is lighter than Maggie, with nicer hair and fuller figure” (Walker 121). This physical difference is closely related to their different personalities. This statement reveals: “We must remember from the beginning that the story is told by Mama; the perceptions are filtered through her mind and her views of her two daughters are not to be accepted uncritically. Several readers have pointed out that Mama's view of Maggie is not quite accurate” (Farrell). Indeed. Regardless of the lack of physical beauty Mama perceives, Maggie has an inner beauty that her mother fails to grasp. Apart from the physical difference, another major handicap for Maggie is the lack of education. Although Dee gets the chance to go to college, Maggie stays home and mainly strives to read and write on her own. Maggie’s injury makes her a victim and causes her to suffer an unequal treatment compared to her sister. Instead of getting Maggie a proper treatment allowing her to enjoy a better healing, Mama and the community prefer to collect money and give Dee an education. Talking about Dee, Mama asserts: “I used to think she hated Maggie, too. But that was before we raised the money, the church and me, to send her to Augusta to school” (Walker 125). Meanwhile, Maggie is left home to strive by herself with her physical and moral scars with no formal education and no professional counseling for the unfortunate accident she has been through. This article informs: “Maggie is the aggregate underclass that has been left behind as a handful of Wangeros achieve their independence-an underclass scarred in the collective disasters Walker symbolizes neatly in the burning of the original Johnson home” (Cowart). Besides, attending college changes Dee completely as she questions her identity and chooses another name. Her return home makes her transformation more visible and creates clashes of views with her mother and sister. According to this critic: “Many readers point to Dee's proclamation of her new name as the turning point in the story, the point at which Dee pushes her mother too far. They point out that Dee is rejecting her family heritage and identity in this scene” (Farrell). This name change deeply hurts Mama who finally realizes Dee is not the person she thought she was. Mama assimilates Dee’s rejection of her name to the rejection of her family and inheritance and becomes conscious that the expectations she placed on Dee were too ...
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Indeed, through words, man’s literature has enabled him to portray history, as well as different settings and events in a person’s life. Through literature, man has come to speak of the unspeakable, paint the unimaginable, and achieve the impossible. This is indeed the case of Alice Walker, a prominent writer and activist for the rights of black women.
That ‘seeding’ of an idea could be initiated by some events or people or culture, etc, etc., which will be visible in the environment around the author. Thus, an author could come up with works based on what he/she sees, hears and feels in his/her environment.
Walker uses different animals to project the personalities and motivations of her characters and for Gruesser, this means that these images are “perfectly appropriate” for a “rural setting” (185). But what is wrong with urban language?
Some of the most mentionable ones are By Edgar Allan Poe and Kate Chopin. These are the kinds of stories that are brought about by inspiration and in turn, inspired great works, both on and off of paper. These stories often came from the core intention of telling a story but they ended up doing more that that.
These views are developed from individual personalities and influence of the society one is living in. Often the differences are usually the cause of cultural conflicts. The social aspect of humans is founded on the values and beliefs they hold. When a group of people do not share collective values, beliefs and norms they tend to conflict.
“Everyday Use” is a story about how Mama’s eldest child Dee undergoes a rebellious transformation to understand her own African American heritage. Her identity crisis has more to do with her family’s decision to send her away from the community to gain education.
Bibliographical sketch of Alice Walker Alice Malsenior Walker is a renowned African American writer, poet, novelist and activist. She is considered by many as a widely travelled, controversial and versatile writer of literature that mostly touches on the African American community.
Other basic needs such as education and healthcare were also hard to come by. In light of the person she is now, her achievements and failures, one can see a non-mistakable loom of the Jim Crow era in her life even in the present times. The sharecropper status her father held had a number of implications in relation to black families.
Alice Walker: In the Pages of History. The artists are believed to be working in order to illustrate their unexpressed emotions and feelings. The artists without an emotional quotient are no artists at all. Alice Walker is an African American novelist, poet, short story writer and political activist.
These stories often came from the core intention of telling a story but they ended up doing more that that. They ended up shining a light for generations of readers.
The work that this paper aims to review is one of those papers that were done by one of
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