Throughout “Everyday Use” mama compares the two sisters very often. For instance, “Dee is lighter than Maggie, with nicer hair and a fuller figure. She is a woman now” (744) Mama is saying Dee is much more attractive than Maggie and how she has the figure of a grown woman, it also shows that Dee is more cherished and appreciated because she is light skin. In the slavery days, Dee would have been an in-house slave while Maggie would have been an outside slave which is based on their physical appearance. Mama also showed bias when she said “Dee feet were always neat looking like God himself shaped them with a certain style.” (745). Mama put Dee on a high pedal stool while she always brought down Maggie, like when she said “she isn’t bright . . . good looks. . . passed her by”. Mama has shown bias between the two sisters since the very beginning of “Everyday Use” comparing the two physical traits. Mama was vey bias throughout the story but between her bias Maggie’s potential and her ignorance tied together brought family themes in this
Walker brought most of the horrific and even sickening scenes of the book to life, with the help and influence of society in history. One of the greatest influences to have an effect on Walker's style of writing and especially The Color Purple, were instances from slavery and prejudice. The whites owned and empowered America during the time of slavery. They had no respect for any other race, which they thought of as substandard. As Lean'tin Bracks stated, blacks were considered to be racially inferior, and they were used for the exploitation of the white culture. The whites used the black people as animals, and made them do their every bidding. Blacks and whites were separated form each other and this segregation of the two races barred blacks from legal and economic access, and they were put to punishment by the white culture. Interaction between the two races rarely occurred other than specific affairs or whites intruding on blacks. There were no penalties to pay by whites, therefore intrusions were common, and they took advantage of the African-Americans. The intrusions varied from breaking and entering to rape and murder for no apparent reason (84). Walker used this basis of racism to grip the reader and take them through a story of a women, who survives physical, verbal, and emotional abuse, everyday.
Both males and females have influences that help decide the ways in which they think, dress, speak, and act within the situation of society. Cultural and personal gender roles are a big influence on the way people live. Learning plays a role in this process of shaping gender roles. Peers, parents, movies, teachers, television, books, and movies could all teach and reinforce gender roles throughout the lifespan.
Alice Walker was born on February 9th 1944 and was born in Eatonton GA. She is the author of the novel, The Color Purple and was an American author, poet and self-activist. Also Alice Malsenior Walker is still living today and is currently 69 years old. Alice Walker was married to Melvin Leventhal and they were married to each other in 1967 and separated in 1977. Walker was the youngest in her family held with eight children and her parents were Tallulah Grant and Willie Lee Walker, who were sharecroppers. Then in 1961 Alice Walker left Eatonton for Spelman college, a prominent school for black women in Atlanta, on a state scholarship (Biography of Alice Walker). Furthermore she then transferred to Sarah Lawrence College in New York, and studied the involvement in civil rights.
If we read The Color Purple with 'gender on the agenda' as required we can identify how the form contributes to the impact of the narrative. The Color Purple is a story that unfolds through the writing and exchange of letters. Opening with the line 'You better not never tell nobody but God. It'd kill your mammy.' A warning issued by the abusive 'father' (later and importantly discovered to be step-father) of the central character Celie who indeed pours out her secret to God and later to her sister Nettie about her life and her pain.
For centuries, women struggle to obtain equality with men. They are invisible and not given opportunities because of their gender. Feminism is the matter of consideration in social, political, and economic equality of the sexes. The feminist movement has been the key to give the rights to women who have been stricken of their equality and privileges that men had fail to give them. It is believed that women have every right to be equal with men and feminism is achieving this gradually. Feminism is favorable to the men, women, and their families because it gives an equal opportunity in life
The two novels prove the claim of the research, which is working on the female characters; and that is why these novels are chosen and made a comparison between them. Both of the writers make their protagonists the victims and from another side send to them the one who will help them to overcome their ordeal. Finally, their life has completely changed and reached what they want.
Dee never liked the old house that burned down. Dee does not even like the new house where Maggie and mama live in now. “Dee is lighter than Maggie, with nicer hair and a fuller figure” (Walker 418). Dee is the type of character that wants everything. Dee knows mamma will never say no to her. Now Maggie is the complete opposite of Dee. Dee needs someone to straighten her out. “Have you ever seen a lame animal, perhaps a dog run over by some careless person rich enough to own a car, sidle up to someone who is ignorant enough to be kind to him” (Walker 418)? That is how mamma described Maggie in “Everyday Use”. All Maggie wants it for her sister to accept her. Maggie needs to accept that not everyone is going to love
Alice Walker states “Dee is lighter than Maggie, with nicer hair and a fuller figure” (71). With this Walker gives an example of how Dee and Maggie were different not only in their views of heritage, but also in their appearance. As the story continues, Mama speaks of a time where she thought Dee hated Maggie. She describes an incident that resulted in the burning of their previous house. Although never directly stated, it was apparent that Maggie was severely injured in the fire. Walke...
When we meet our narrator, the mother of Maggie and Dee, she is waiting in the yard with Maggie for Dee to visit. The mother takes simple pleasure in such a pleasant place where, "anyone can come back and look up at the elm tree and wait for the breezes that never come inside the house." (Walker 383) This is her basic attitude, the simple everyday pleasures that have nothing to do with great ideas, cultural heritage or family or racial histories. She later reveals to us that she is even more the rough rural woman since she, "can kill and clean a hog as mercilessly as a man." (Walker 383) Hardly a woman one would expect to have much patience with hanging historical quilts on a wall. Daughter Maggie is very much the opposite of her older sister, Dee. Maggie is portrayed as knowing "she is not bright." (Walker 384)
When two children are brought up by the same parent in the same environment, one might logically conclude that these children will be very similar, or at least have comparable qualities. In Alice Walker's "Everyday Use," however, this is not the case. The only thing Maggie and Dee share in common is the fact that they were both raised by the same woman in the same home. They differ in appearance, personality, and ideas that concern the family artifacts.
In this story, Maggie is a lot like her mother. They both are uneducated, loving, caring, and allow Dee to run over them. Maggie has been through more things than her mother has though, because of the incident that happened. Maggie has scars like Emily, except Maggie’s scars are from a house fire (319). The house fire has impacted Maggie’s life tremendously, since she is very self-conscious and shy. Walker stated that Maggie is “ashamed of the burn scars down her arms and legs (318). The mother is protective of Maggie and will be there for her whenever she needs her too. Even though her mother knows all her struggles, she still supports her and pushes her to be better. I think that is one reason she pushes her to marry John Thomas, because she wants her to become her own person and to be strong (319). The mother of “Everyday Use” is opposite from the mother in “I Stand Here Ironing”, because she is there for her children no matter what their financial status
The mother describes her younger daughter, Maggie, as ."..not bright. Like good looks and money, quickness passed her by," and ."..perhaps a dog run over by some careless person rich enough to own a car, sidle up to someone who is ignorant enough to be kind to him...That's the way my Maggie walks." The reader already feels the older daughter Dee, although ."..stylish...with nicer hair and a fuller figure...and full of knowledge" is more like the careless person rich enough to own a car. Although Maggie and her mother make attempts to improve the appearance of themselves and their home for Dee's arrival and seem eager to see her, having no relation to Dee the reader is given no reason to like her. Already Walker is placing value on "slow, self-conscious," Maggie, who plans on marrying and staying close to home, and casting, Dee, who is attractive and cosmopolitan, and could conceivably bring greater resources to her sister and mother, in a negative light.
Alice Walker’s writings were greatly influenced by the political and societal happenings around her during the 1960s and 1970s. She not only wrote about events that were taking place, she participated in them as well. Her devoted time and energy into society is very evident in her works. The Color Purple, one of Walker’s most prized novels, sends out a social message that concerns women’s struggle for freedom in a society where they are viewed as inferior to men. The events that happened during and previous to her writing of The Color Purple had a tremendous impact on the standpoint of the novel.