Books and Movies Reviews

Everyday Use and Two Kinds

Moments of realization are important themes in the short stories
“Everyday Use” and “Two Kinds.”Both stories describe characters that
undergo a change when they gain a broader understanding of life.By
creating situations that allow their characters to discover something
important about themselves, Alice Walker and Amy Tan help us understand how
Both stories focus on mother and daughter relationships.In “Everyday
Use,” Walker demonstrates how a mother discovers the truth about her two
daughters and herself as well.For instance, in the beginning of the
story, the narrator describes Maggie as “a lame animal, perhaps a dog run
over by some careless person . . . sidle up to someone who is ignorant
enough to be kind to them” (1423).However, she changes her mind about
Maggie, after she offers Dee the quilts.This action causes the narrator
to feel something like the “spirit of God” (1428) that makes her happy and
makes her want to shout. (1428)The mother realizes that looks are not
everything and despite how Maggie looks and acts, she is a better person
than the pretty Dee.She also realizes how she is content with her life
just as it is, regardless if Maggie approves of it or not.
Similarly, Jing-Mei struggles with her mother’s attempts to turn her
into something that she is not.For example, she forces her to pay the
piano, which makes Jing-Mei feel as thought she had been “sent to hell”
(146).Jing-Mei resists her mother’s desire so much, that she sabotages
herself.She admits that she might have been a good pianist at an early
age, but she was “so determined not to try” (148).It is only after her
mother’s death that Jing-Mei appreciates her efforts.She reconciles the
pleading child she was with the contented adult she has become by realizing
her mother was only trying to help her.
In conclusion, both stories revolve around life-changing realizations