Alice Walker Essay 15

Topics: Meaning of life, Black people, Family Pages: 1 (368 words) Published: February 4, 2008
"In Search of our Mother's Garden" is a non-fiction piece of prose that reveals how Alice Walker feels about family heritage. Thus, in "Everyday Use", Walker's harsh treatment of Dee is justified. "In Search of our Mother's Garden" written by Alice Walker discusses and celebrates African American mothers and grandmothers as artists whose talents were repressed because of the history of our country. Because black women of this era were often not given the opportunities to nurture or develop their artistic abilities, many found ways to express talents within their own environment. For example, Walker's mother expressed her art in the development of her beautiful gardens. She was "an artist who left her mark in the only materials she could afford and in the only medium her position in society allowed her to use" (excerpt). She planted an array of flowers and tended to them each day in an attempt to retain her African heritage. By meticulously working, Walker's mother attached herself to the land and nature which symbolized her creative spirit. I believe the main idea in "Everyday Use" and "In Search of our Mother's Garden" is the celebration of African American ancestors who have been able to make something beautiful and functional out of oppression. Through acts of creativity, true connections are made to history and cultural heritage. Alice Walker expresses the ultimate importance of understanding family and heritage throughout the entire prose. Within "Everyday Use", the harsh treatment of Dee is absolutely justified. Dee views herself as belonging to a higher intellectual and social class than Mama and Maggie, and therefore they should be honored to be in her presence. Dee accuses her family of not truly understanding the meaning of heritage. When, in fact, Dee is returning home to retrieve artifacts and do the ultimate disrespect to family heritage…put it on display. Dee's understanding of heritage is much more superficial. As Mama and Maggie...
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