Critical Analysis Of Everyday Use By Alice Walker

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“Everyday Use” is one of the most popular stories by Alice Walker. The issue that this story raises is very pertinent from ‘womanist’ perspective. The term, in its broader sense, designates a culture specific form of woman-referred policy and theory. ‘womanism’ may be defined as a strand within ‘black feminism’. As against womansim, feminist movement of the day was predominately white-centric. A womanist is one who expresses a certain amount of respect for woman and their talent and abilities beyond the boundaries of race and class. “Everyday Use” can be seen as a literary representation of this concept. “Everyday Use” is a story of a mother and her two daughters- Dee and Maggie. While narrating the life of an Afro-American mother and her two daughters, it explores the issues of culture and heritage, the influence of black revolutionary politics of the 1960’s and its implication of black woman. It is a story through which woman converse with each other across time and space. Right at the onset of the story a line comes- “for your grandmamma”, it arises a series of question in reader’s mind as to whom is this story addressed to? For what purpose? Later in the story one realizes that the three protagonists are mere types. It actually belongs to everyone. While analyzing the story, Guerin et .al. put it: “Everyday Use is about the everyday lives of black woman past and present, encircle by family and culture” Walker maintains the aesthetic position by employing the first

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