I am sitting here while my Composition I students struggle over an in class essay on the wonderful "Everyday Use," by the glorious Alice Walker.
They are having such a hard time. I know they will do their best. I know they will come to an understanding of the different values of the sisters. I know they will love Maggie and her mother.
I have yet to have a student really identify with Dee. This surprises me, because I did. I don't mean that I totally disrespected my mother and my sister(s), although the sisters might tell a different tale, but there were times when we spoke a different language.
There were also times when I was so full of myself and my grand ideas--so full of my feminist struggle--that I did not give credit to the woman who raised three girls by herself--to the women my sisters had become. I certainly gave them lip service, just as Dee has appreciation for the "folk art" her grandmother had quilted. But I neglected to accept what they were--to be proud of what they were. Warts (lack of "higher" education) and all. I wonder if that is just part of the undergraduate experience--that strange and heady hubris.
On a lighter note, one of my perfect, precious puppies is what is called a Walker Fox Hound. So her name is
I somehow think Alice would appreciate the gesture.