February 14th 2015
"it is not he honor that you take with you but the heritage you leave behind." Branch
Richey. Heritage is a huge part of the short story "Everyday Use" by Alice Walker. The conflicting views from two sisters is portrayed by pounding on the true importance of ones heritage. Heritage is not just something a person can look at and ponder about, there is meant to be such a deeper meaning in it. Perhaps even a use in the heritage.
Momma, the narrator of the story, spends a good part of the story trying to make a point that the quilts in the story are more than just quilts. They represent their ancestors and tell a story with each one. Maggie, the younger of the two sisters, understood this and had great appreciation for heritage and the art of sewing so she could better understand the work and love that went into those quilts. The blankets were even made with parts of Mammas parents clothing, worn by them for years and years. While Dee, the older of the sisters, also the favored sister in the beginning, has little appreciation for the quilts and wants to use them as art or decoration. Dee is more modernized and materialistic, so naturally it was hard for her to really feel the connection and see the worth with these blankets such as Maggie did.
As little as Dee cares for the materiel heritage in her family, she cares even less about the nonmateriel heritage still left in her family. The perfect example is her name. Dee wants to change her name and she even stated that she can not stand to be named after the people who oppressed her. Momma does not agree with the name change, especially since it is a fourth generation name and has been in her family for many years. After Momma decides to give
Maggie the quits knowing that she will put them to everyday use Dee says "you just don’t understand your heritage." The irony in this statement is unreal for it is Momma and Maggie that understand the point and meaning behind heritage, Dee is the one who would just like to show off her heritage and hang it on…