1. The internal and external conflict in this story is very vague, do you think this is done on purpose, or are the conflicts tied together in some way?
2. The character Dee has her own opinions on her heritage. Do you think this gives her the idea that she is superior to the others and if so why?
3. Why do you think Maggie and her mother let Dee boss them around and talk bad about them, without feeling the need to make her feel more gracious until the end?
4. Do you think that the relationship between Dee and Maggie shows more hatred than normal siblings?
In "Everyday Use" by Alice Walker, the author carefully applies dialogue to demonstrate a constrast between Dee and her family. As the story commences, the narrator, Mama, is preparing for her daughter, Dee, to arrive for a visit. Dee, an educated woman, is linguistically different from the rest of her family. The contrast between Dee and Maggie's dialect is very evident when Maggie says, "I can 'member Grandma Dee without the quilts." Additionally, Mama illustrates her incorrect grammar when she states, "God know I been saving 'em for long enough with nobody using 'em." Moreover, while Maggie and Mama speak improperly, Dee demonstrates sophistication in her speech when she declares, "Maggie's brain is like an elephant's," due to her use of a metaphor. To conclude, Alice Walker applies dialogue to demonstrate a contrast between Dee and her family in "Everday Use."
Comparing this story to another:
"Everday Use" really reminded us of the film New York Minute starring Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. Like Dee and Maggie, Mary-Kate and Ashley's characters differ in many ways. While Dee is much more educated than Maggie, Ashley's character is much more organized and determined to further her education while Mary-Kate's character is not focused on academics in the least.