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Themes And Imagery In Everyday Use By Alice Walker

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The short story, Everyday Use, is written by Alice Walker. This short story tells about the narrator, mama, and her daughter Maggie wait for a visit from Dee, mama’s older daughter. Throughout this short story, the reader can see the distraught relationship between mama and Dee. The reader can see how Dee is different than mama and Maggie; she thinks that she knows way more about her heritage than mama and Maggie, when she really does not. In the short story, Everyday Use, Walker uses imagery, symbolism, and point of view to show that heritage can only be understood when one is true to their roots. The author uses imagery as one literary device to showcase the overall theme of the story. Mama describes the burning of their house, “as she watched the last dingy gray board of the house fall in toward the red-hot brick chimney,” (Walker, 487). Walker also uses imagery to describe the other characters, “It stands up straight like the wool on a sheep, (488). In the essay, “Walker’s Everyday Use” by John Gruesser, it states, “Mama frequently describes Maggie as a docile, somewhat frightened animal, one that accepts the hand that fate has dealt her and attempts to flee any…show more content…
Everyday Use is written in first person point of view. The narrator is Mama, so everything that is written from her point of view. This perspective allows the readers to see some of Mama’s inner thoughts and personal commentary about that is happening. An example of this is, “I didn’t want to bring up how I had offered Dee (Wangero) a quilt when she went away to college. Then she has told me they were old-fashioned, out of style,” (490). By having this story in first person point of view, it gives the readers an insight to how the narrator really feels about certain characters. It also allows the readers to view background information from the narrator, which allows the story to come together as a whole and be more
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