Everyday Use, set in the 60s or early 70s, features characters struggling with each other to define their identities within the African American culture. The story begins with Mama, and her daughter, Maggie, ...
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...s leaving and are not affected by what she has said. As Dee (Wangero) puts on her sunglasses and is about to leave, Mama says “Maggie smiled; maybe at the sunglasses. But a real smile, not scared” (Baym and Levine 1537). Mama and Maggie go back to the same lives they have always known and are comfortable with. “After we watched the car dust settle I asked Maggie to bring me a dip of snuff. And then the two of us sat there just enjoying, until it was time to go in the house and go to bed” (Baym and Levine 1537).
As a major author of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry during the late twentieth and early twenty-first century, Alice Walker accentuated the perspective of women, especially African American women, characterizing them as “the mule of the world” (Abbot 42). She advocates strength from African American women and made long strides in the literary world (Hoel 34).
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