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Analysis Of Everyday Use By Alice Walker

Decent Essays
“Everyday Use”

Something that you can’t control about your life is your family. Good, bad, or ugly, you start your life with them in some capacity. By being present or not, positive or not, they will shape your life. Your family should bring out the best in you. They should encourage you to do what you’ve always inspired to do and to be who you’ve always inspired to be. You should never disregard your family or forget where you come from. When you have your family by your side, you never need to feel that you are alone as you step out into the world.

In Alice Walker’s short story “Everyday Use”, Dee distanced herself from her family. “Your Heritage,” she said, And then she turned to Maggie, kissed her, and said, “You ought to try to make something of yourself, too, Maggie. It’s really a new day for us. But from the way you and Mama still live you’d never know it.” (Walker). Dee has become very successful while distancing herself from her family and insults them whenever she gets the chance.

Dee is angered by her views of oppression in her family. She rejected her origins/heritage and constructed a new heritage for herself, wearing “African” clothes and jewelry. Her given name, Dee, was a part of the family legacy and she changed it to Wangero to represent her “African” heritage. Although she took these steps to embracing her newfound African heritage, she has little understanding of Africa.

Dee started to believe that her real heritage was dead and still
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