Does this story seem real? Why?

Expert Answers

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"Everyday Use" by Alice Walker is a very realistic story. Take a look at the plot of this story. It isn't about anything earth-shaking; there are no supernatural characters or wild plot twists, and there is not a shocking ending. It is simply a story about a family trying to cope with a family problem, the kind of problem that many families face—conflict among family members due to different perspectives.

Mama and Maggie are relatively comfortable with their lives, but Dee (Maggie’s sister) is ambitious and just doesn’t understand why Mama and Maggie are satisfied with the way things are. That’s really the crux of the conflict.

Consider the climax to the story—Mama takes some quilts away from Dee (who wants to use them as historical artifacts) and gives them to Maggie (who wants to use them for what they are—quilts for a bed). Mama’s decision to stand up for Dee signals the turning point in the relationships between the women.

Even the title of the story—Everyday Use—sounds ordinary and realistic. It’s an “everyday” story.

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