In “What is Cultural Identity” by Elsie Trumbull and Maria Pacheco it states that “we can imagine culture as invisible webs of composed values, beliefs, ideas about appropriate behavior, and socially constructed truths”, according to this statement culture is embedded into us and effects the way people see everything. It’s hard for people to see their culture, in addition this evidence says “Most of the time our cultures are invisible to us yet they are the context within which we operate and make sense of the world.” Therefore culture has an effect on everyone.
The culture of a community is defined by the living patterns of the members of the society. Culture has an important place in one’s identity. Identity is a process of becoming, constructing from the matrix of similarities and difference. Culture is a source of reviving the cultural identity. The culture enables us to locate our identity in a cultural space.
Professor Joe Sarnowski’s academic journal criticizes the characters of the story, “Every Day Use”. He examines the conflict between the mother and her oldest daughter, Dee. Sarnowski asserts that Dee is trying to justify her personal gain, since she cherishes the economic value of the quilts more than that of the heritage they represent. The author continues to compare Dee’s ego with that of her sister Maggie. Who in contrast, has true appreciation for her heritage. Furthermore, Sarnowski acknowledges mother’s disappointment as Maggie gives up the quilts, pointing out that they represent memories of family members. The author believes that displaying these quilts will disintegrate the sense of family history they carry. Consequently,
Culture is all about family. It is a family’s belief systems, the cultural traditions that are celebrated, and the special holidays and events that occur in the year. My parents raised me with a lot of beliefs that have had an effect on who I am today. These are beliefs that don’t just belong to my culture, but they come straight from the values of my family.
Culture is significant in forming our World’s history along with defining what a society is. Cultural impact will always exist due to history and national pride. But what exactly is a culture? To Americans, culture is the everywhere. Within our pop music, fashion, cuisine, and much more.
Alice Walker’s short story “Everyday Use” involves a conflict between two sisters and their desire for a family quilt. Each sister has a reason for wanting the quilt but Maggie deserves it more. She needs it because she will use it unlike Dee who will hang it up for others to view. Dee was being conceded when she said, “Maggie can’t appreciate these quilts,” when really, she is the one who would never appreciate them. Maggie will use the quilts “for when she marries John Thomas” as Mama said.
In the short stories we have read there have been numerous themes. The impact of tradition, the value of heritage, the importance of family, the divide between social classes, and the presence of love are all ideas that can be found in the stories we have read. Short stories have managed to encapture the importance and true meaning of life in just a few sentences by imposing on the readers themes we can all relate to. A common theme presented in Alice Walker’s “Everyday Use” and Toni Cade Bambara’s “The Lesson” is the power of knowledge and education.
Culture is an interesting concept. It is the traditions of a type of people as well as their arts, manners, and many other things. It’s essentially the collection of a peoples’ intellectual achievements. Your culture is with you from the time you’re born. It’s all around you, and shapes who you are as a person.
Culture is the building block for life. It sets society's standards, it sets our own standards, and everything we know is all because of our culture. Culture is a way of thinking, a way of behaving and learning. We express our opinions based upon our beliefs, and define ourselves by what aspects of our culture we choose to show. Culture's impact on someone's perspective of others and the world is greater than its other influencers because it can change how you interact with people, your ability to change, and your opinions of the world.
While Dee is asking for the quilts, her mom remembers a time when she offered Dee the quilts before leaving and she replied ," They were old-fashioned, out of style"(Walker 64). This allows the reader to acknowledge that Dee does not fully comprehend the true meaning of the quilts, viewing the quilt as if it was just another object in the world. Later in the story, Maggie becomes upset when Dee was about to take the quilts. The author illustrates Maggie putting snuff in her bottom lip giving ," her face a kind of dopey, hangdog look"(Walker 65). This exemplifies to the readers that through the mother's eyes, Maggie was so extremely upset that Dee was once again going to win by taking the quilts because Maggie truly understands the meaning of the quilts and deserves to not be defeated by Dee.
These quilts are a ways of honoring her African American heritage and to be given these was very significant in their culture. For once Dee sees the historical background because of the stitching and material used, but doesn’t find any use in using them. Dee is going to try and convince her mom to let her keep the quilts, when Dee says, “Maggie can’t appreciate these quilts!” (Walker 721) and “You just will not understand. The point these quilts, these quilts!”
This new outlook on her life caused Dee to place different values on the items with which she had grown up. She wanted to take the items as things to put on display like art hanging on a wall. Dee even wanted the cherished quilts to “hang them” (Walker, 1973) instead of using them as blankets. As she saw it, to use the quilts for their original purpose would destroy them, or as she said, “Maggie would put them on the bed and in five years they 'd be in rags” (Walker, 1973).
In the movie Everyday Use by Alice walker Dee comes home and acts like she has a completely different culture than her mother and her sister Maggie. Dee says “No, Mama,” she says “Not Dee, Wangero Leewanika Kemanjo”. (Everyday Use 61) . Dee says “Hang them” (Everyday Use). Referring to the quilts she yells at her mom because she think that Maggie will actually use them and ruin them.
In the short story” Everyday Use” by Alice Walker who tells a story about black women who have two daughters Maggie and Dee. She has to have the decision to give the quilts of one of her two daughters. Dee her oldest daughter who has been away at college and comes to visit her family and she wants the quilts as popular fashion and show them as part of their heritage. Maggie, her youngest daughter, who lives with her mother at home and understands the family tradition and heritage.her mother has been promised to give the quilts for her. The quilts mean for Maggie communication with family and culture.