English 1302 – 25
Skewed Point of View
In Alice Walker's “Everyday Use” the point of view of the story is told through the eye's of Mama Johnson to help point out the struggle between the preservation of her heritage and the living of it. This limited omniscient point of view not only showcases Walker's ability to subliminally influence us to take sides for Mama and her youngest daughter Maggie, but to also show the inherent struggle between the families everyday perception of objects that Mama's oldest daughter Dee sees as something to be maintained and cherished for as along as possible. The point of view through Mama's eyes accentuates the innocent eye point of view by showing her naivety and simplicity to the outside world that Dee has always so thrived in and her lack of ability to understand old heirlooms that she would see preserved to keep the heritage alive she lives everyday.
Mama Johnson is first presented immediately as someone who can be trusted through her knowledge of things presented to her firstly by describing her misfortunate youngest daughter Maggie by saying “She is not bright. Like good looks and money, quickness passed her by,” as well as stating she “was never a good singer” and “never could carry a tune” (Alice 163). These blunt observations helps the reader trust what Mama Johnson says because they are things personally significant to her and personal within her life and about her family. She does not sugar coat the truth or try to mask what is in front of her because she has no reason to hide what is her heritage because it is the life she lives everyday.
When Dee finally arrives she instantly begins taking snap shots of her former home. She pushes to preserve the heritage she left behind by taking these captured shots of a heritage fading away and by literally taking it back with her which is the case with the dasher and quilts. Dee eagerly attempts to take...