Everyday Use by Alice Walker, Literary Essay Example

Published: 2022-02-21
Everyday Use by Alice Walker, Literary Essay Example
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Alice Walker
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 897 words
8 min read

"Everyday Use" is a story written by Alice Walker and it is used to portray some of the issues that are surrounding the African-American women. Most of them have to struggle with the issues of racism and social identification especially in the period when they have to find out some of the ways they can be relieved from the pressures that are posed by the societal differences. The story is not only about some of the issues facing the African American women, but it is also about the sibling rivalry which is an issue that has been in existence for a long while. There is a character called Dee who comes home and starts giving an explanation of the things that she thinks can be used to decorate their home and she insists that everything she has said should be implemented having in mind that she was used to getting everything she needed from the time when she was a child. On the other hand, the mother seems to have saved everything for Maggie since he is the child that she loves the most in the family.

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The story has a number symbols that are used to make the story even more interesting because it already has a large audience. The first symbol that is used is the yard where Mama likes sitting while waiting for her daughters to come home. The yard has been used to show a place that is silent, cool and does not have any form of regrets having in mind that Mama has been going through a lot of difficulties in her life. There is also the use of quilts to show the bond that exists between those who were living in different generations but still have some form of connection.

The story has characters who have been given unusual prominence and emphasis, and in that case, they can be seen to bear some form of symbolic significance. For instance, Mama has been used to represent the African American women who have been going through a lot of problems, but she has never given up at any time. She is harshly honest, and she uses that characteristic to make sure that Maggie and Dee are always on the right track. Also, she is also used to show the unconditional love that a mother has for her daughters.

Symbols have been used to depict the characters in the story in various ways. For instance, the author makes use of animal images to show some of the ways the characters behave while in multiple vicinities. For example, Maggie is said to be a pathetic pooch who acts like a lame animal (Walker 9). This is a clear indication that she is a careless character who can get in trouble at any time. This is a clear indication that the symbols have been used to provide a short synopsis of what people should expect from the characters in the story.

Symbols have also been used to advance the plot of the story in a way that one can be able to grasp everything that is mentioned. For instance, the use of quilt has been used to make everyone know that even though there are a lot of variations between women of different generations, they still have some connections that make them stick together. Mama, Maggie, and Dee are all women who lived in different generations and are always in conflicts but still find some time to settle down and focus on solving issues that are affecting them.

The story has a moral purpose, and it intends to convey a message that is based on some of the ways people are supposed to behave especially when they are related in various ways. The other purposes to make people behave in a manner that can be accepted by the society when looked from the perspective of the family. There are a lot of differences, but people are still supposed to find a way of sticking together. Dee is very educated and does not want any connection between here and the mother. Later on, she realizes that the family is essential and maintains the good and expected behavior.

The allegorical figure in the story is Mama who also acts as the narrator of everything that is taking place in the story. In that case, she can be compared to people who have undergone oppressions and are now used to it in a manner that she can now treat all other people differently. The allegorical framework of the story, therefore, revolves around the fact that characters are used to represent different ideas. There are those who have been used to describe the definite form of human existence while others are used to show the contrary and animalistic human form of existence.

The story makes a combination of both the allegorical figures and symbols and they work together interchangeably. For instance, Mama has been used as an allegorical figure to show someone who is always ready to endure pain. This is then combined with the backyard which is the place where Mama likes sitting as she is thinking about everything that she has experienced. The story does not provide any reference to myths and misconceptions, and this makes it realistic as it depicts the exact activities that take place in the society.

Works Cited

Walker, Alice. "Everyday Use." Virginia Education.1973

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Everyday Use by Alice Walker, Literary Essay Example. (2022, Feb 21). Retrieved from https://speedypaper.com/essays/everyday-use-by-alice-walker

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