Published as far back as 1973, a short story entitled “Everyday Use” by Alice Walker is still widely read and discussed. It belongs to a collection of stories known as ‘In Love and Trouble’ and it has become a subject of academic writing on everyday use essay topics as it highlights topical issues and focuses on eternal matters that never lose their value. In 2003, there was a film version of this short story which is also a subject for debates and analysis.
As the author was passionately engaged in the process of preserving the African-American heritage and her feelings about the ruined culture were genuine and bright, it is evident in the story as well. “Everyday Use brings forth an idea of heritage that should be valued and appreciated by all generations. It is a simple story of a family that consists of the mother and two daughters, Wangero or Dee, and Maggie. This family is used as an example of contradictory views of the cultural heritage. The plot takes place in the 1860s when the black nationalists from African-American population formed their groups. The narrator of the story is Mama who knows that one of her daughters, Dee, belongs to this group, while it is Maggie who values their legacy and heritage genuinely. The girls are absolutely different in their attitude to their background and family history. Alice Walker tells the story, using bright symbols, effective development of her characters, and original presentation of the story setting to let the readers see the value of national heritage and the importance that the African-American culture has for the whole nation.
The students can choose among everyday use essay topics to find an aspect that will be the core idea of their research and writing.
- Dee in “Everyday Use”: analysis of the character
- What is Alice Walker’s interpretation of the idea of tyranny in the story?
- What is Alice Walker’s interpretation of the ideas of household and family in the story?
- How does Alice Walker define the rights of African Americans?
- What is the main religious idea in the short story “Everyday Use”?
- The concept of cultural identity presented by Alice Walker in her "Everyday Use."
- What is the relationships between the mother and her daughters in the short story “Everyday Use”?
- Are all the values in "Everyday Use" true?
- What is the meaning of cultural legacy in Alice Walker's “Everyday Use”?
- The concepts of denial and acceptance in Alice Walker's “Everyday Use”.
- The symbolism of a quilt in Alice Walker's “Everyday Use”.
- Is it possible to leave the past behind? Use the examples from Alice Walker's “Everyday Use”.
- Is there anything common between the sisters in Alice Walker's “Everyday Use”?
- Generation gap in Alice Walker's “Everyday Use”
- The concept of identity and cultural heritage in Alice Walker's “Everyday Use”
- Are Mama and Dee sympathetic characters?
- Is Alice Walker's story “Everyday Use” relevant today?
You will definitely find at least one of the everyday use essay topics interesting for you. We are glad that we could help you!