African American Heritage In Everyday Use By Alice Walker

1002 Words5 Pages
In African American culture, a family’s heritage is important and valuable to one’s life. A heritage consists of different values, interests, morals, and beliefs. A family’s heritage is an identity a person is born with and it affects his or her day to day life. The short story by Alice Walker known as “Everyday Use” is pushing the significance of heritage within a family (494-499). “Everyday Use” is reminding people to apply their family’s heritage to daily life. However, a character within the story named Dee Johnson is attempting to redefine her heritage to form a new identity, fight against the people who oppressed her heritage, and educate her family about their family’s heritage (Walker 494-499).
When speaking about heritage, Dee is forming her own identity within the world by searching for her personal heritage. She seems eager to explore the truths hidden within her family’s heritage. She doesn’t want to remain unsure about the wholeness of her African American Heritage. She would rather explore her heritage to find more about her family’s background. Her family’s heritage can be debunked in a million different ways. However, Dee wants to know the exact information about her past so she can help herself. “I could respect her and sympathize with her attempts to make something of herself in a world in which black women are expected to conform to the problematic and stereotypically passive roles” (Mullins). The quote shows that the era Dee was born in didn’t allow many
Get Access