Due: Wednesday Feb. 12th
Turned in: Wednesday Feb. 12th
Everyday Use by Alice Walker
Alice Walker chose to write “Everyday Use” in first person, from Mrs. Johnson’s point of view to make it easier for us, the readers, to understand the plot or purpose of the story. Alice Walker wants us to know more about Mrs. Johnson’s background, a hard working black single mother of two from back then (1900s). She struggled all her life for her two daughters, Dee and Maggie; both very different from each other. Mrs. Johnson is brutally honest when describing her two daughters and even herself. She calls herself a “large, big-boned woman with rough man-working hands”. Often comparing herself to a man doing masculine things because of how hard she works on her property, she kills and cleans hogs, wearing flannel pajamas and overalls …all these reflect a strong, capable and independent mother, even though she lacks of certain education. If the story was to be told from a neutral third person point of view there wouldn’t be much of an impact to the theme of the story, heritage. You have Mrs. Johnson who feels strong about her heritage and Dee who tries to disguise it with the new persona she’s created. Coming from a neutral point of view you wouldn’t get a feel on how strongly Mrs. Johnson feels about her heritage since it’s not coming from her directly. Details would also be left out, like how Mrs. Johnson describes herself and a true explanation on the connection she has with her daughters. If the story would have been told from Dee’s point of view, we had missed all this information from Mrs. Johnson’s heritage (black woman heritage). Dee is a very educated, arrogant, selfish, and a determined person. Her knowledge and education has only been used to put other people down, like she did with her mom, sister and friends. Dee changed her own name to Wangero; she said that she felt oppressed by the people who first name her. Dee didn’t even remember where...
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