Everyday Use Heritage Analysis

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In “Everyday Use” written by Alice Walker, there are a few themes that serve throughout the story. It would be agreeable that heritage, sense of belonging with acceptance, tradition and power of education are consistent theme in this story. The character’s characteristics like Mama’s earthly and kindhearted spirit, Dee’s bold, simple minded and delusional personality and Maggie’s amiable and timid persona each contributed to a relevant theme. Dee’s bold and demanding personality when she came home shows how powerful education is. The critical essay, “Fight vs. Flight: A Re-evaluation of Dee in Alice Walker’s “Everyday Use”” by Susan Farrell analyzes the whole story and increase my understanding on some points that I didn’t even think of while…show more content…
Dee threw her heritage away to follow a false heritage by what she was taught at school and brainwashed by Hakim. She did this because she doesn’t grasp the meaning of heritage by experience and she’s learning some other version somewhere else. Dee is being simple minded and letting the power to go in her head. Mama never finished school beyond second grade and she sent Dee to school so she wouldn’t end up like her. I questioned why she didn’t raise money to send Maggie to school but then I realized she didn’t want another Dee. Mama didn’t like how the schools were brainwashing Dee, she stated, “She used to read to us without pity; forcing words, lies, and other folks’ habits, whole lives upon us two, sitting trapped and ignorant underneath her voice” (71). By the end of the story, the reason why Mama didn’t get upset with Dee changing her name and her profound bold and bossy attitude was that she knows the school put stories and thoughts in Dee’s head about heritage and roots and she knew she couldn’t change Dee once she is set in her ways. So now Dee has the thought process that she should be living in the roots all the way in the beginning of African times and she should disregard her own family roots. Susan Farrell stated, “Most critics see Dee’s education and her insistence on reading to Mama and Maggie as further evidence of her separation from and lack of understanding for her family identity and heritage” (Farrell 182). Dee believes she is more intelligent than her mother and sister, and she uses that to make herself seem powerful above them. Dee let education and the power of knowledge separate her from her family, heritage and made her lose her true

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