Fight Essay

1080 WordsApr 23, 20135 Pages
In “Everyday Use”, Alice walker tells the story of a mother and her two daughters’ conflicting ideas about their identities and ancestry. She personifies the different sides of culture and heritage in the characters of Dee, Maggie and the Mother, each with its different qualities and philosophies in life. Mama is a simple, countrywoman that valued culture and heritage for its usefulness as well as its personal significance by living and doing simple things in life. She shows disdain for Dee’s materialistic connection to her heritage. Maggie is the shy, passive sister that is similar to mama in her simple way of life but remembers the meaning of her heritage. Dee represents a materialistic and modern way of life where culture and heritage are to be valued only for their artistic appeal. Although the three women are one family; their perspectives in life are very diverse. Mother is proud of who she is and is happy with the life she has been given, although, she has not accomplished materialistically. On the other hand, Dee has a different outlook. She sees herself as in control of her life and believes she has the ability to do anything she wants with it. Her mother tells of how “Dee wanted nice things” (Walker 2) and how she pretty much get what she wants. This attitude shows in the story when she insists on taking the churn top and the dasher and then the old quilts, which her mother promised to give to Maggie. In comparison to Dee, Maggie has accepted life as it is and continues to live in an un-educated world where happiness is formed in the heart, not with possessions. As much as their outlooks are different so are their views of heritage. Maggie and her mother believe that the word heritage deals with their family’s tradition. Mama sees heritage in the practical things and as a string of memories. When she gives the quilts to Maggie, she hopes that Maggie will

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