Indecisiveness In Alice Walker's Everyday Use Essay

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Since the dawn of mankind, rivalries have been prominent. Whether it was over food, territory or a mate, it was indeed a conflict. In more modern times, however, rivalries over petty things are more prominent in the common person, especially in siblings. Though the siblings may be fighting over who gets what, the parents choose a resolution that is more than just an object. This solution is perfectly portrayed in Alice Walker’s, “Everyday Use.” The siblings in the story, Maggie and Dee, are fighting over a materialistic object: a quilt. Walker characterizes both Maggie and Dee to have the reader capable of inferring why Mama resolved the dispute the way she did. Because of Dee’s indecisive qualities and Africanized personality, she is blinded…show more content…
The child’s inability to make a decision can be one of the most annoying things for any parent to endure. One moment the child refuses to take an offered item, but the next moment they are begging for it. Dee is the epitome of a fence-sitter. Readers see examples of Dee doing this twice: “She pins on my dress a large orchid, even though she had told me once that she thinks orchids are tacky flowers” (Walker). And again: “… I had offered Dee (Wangero) a quilt when she went away to college. Then she told me they were old-fashioned, out of style” (Walker). Dee’s indecisiveness no doubt irritates Mama to an extreme amount. The example with the quilts is not the first time either. Mama did not give the quilt to Dee because she denied it before and already decided to give it to Maggie. Maggie’s selflessness reinforces Mama’s current stance on this as well. Maggie declares; “She can have them, Mama” (Walker). With Maggie’s generosity, in contrast to Dee’s greed, Mama makes her final decision. As a mother, it is Mama’s job to make a choice for them. It is a no brainer that she would choose Maggie, the one that is willing to give the quilt away, versus Dee, who is going to extreme lengths to receive the quilt. The two opposite views on the quilt show Mama’s moral standard. She would choose the generous, like most people would, over the
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