I’m Stacey, your composition tutor for the Writing Center. I have reviewed your submission and have several
suggestions that will help you revise. Please feel free to contact us through a live chat session with any follow-up
questions or for any clarification.
Below, you will find a revision plan along with margin comments within your paper. Use my suggestions as a starting
point for the revision process. Also, please note that I have not edited or proofread the entire draft for minor errors, but
rather, focused on overall concerns such as idea development. For a complete look at your grammar and punctuation,
please use the Grammarly software available under “Writing Center” in your classroom.
For your revisions, I suggest focusing on:
Keep in mind that your paper is a literary analysis. A literary analysis
involves some summarization , but you should not write a report. A
literary analysis focuses on how plot/structure, character, setting, and
many other techniques are used by the author to create meaning. For more
help concerning the prompt, please see below:
1. How do we know that the protagonist is impoverished? Is she content with her class? Why or why not?
2. How do we know that she is African-American? How does her alienation due to her race also connect with her education?
3. The protagonist’s daughter, Dee, who has embraced her African roots, accuses her mother of not understanding her
heritage. Why? What is the situational irony at the end of the story?
2. Thesis Statement
Make sure that you have a strong thesis statement at the end of your introduction. Your thesis statement should 1)
contain your debatable claim about the work, and 2) list the specific points you will develop to support your claim. See
the example below.
In “The Masque of the Red Death,” Poe uses the symbolism of the stranger, the clock, and the seventh room to develop
the theme of death
Based on the sample thesis, the first supporting paragraph will be about how death is symbolized by the stranger. The
second supporting paragraph will be about how death is symbolized by the clock. The third supporting paragraph will be
about how death is symbolized by the seventh room.
See this link for more information on thesis statements: https://awc.ashford.edu/essay-dev-thesis-statements.html
Good luck in your course, and I hope we can help you with your next assignment.
English 125 : Introduction to Literature
April 30, 2017
Prompt: In some stories, characters come into conflict with the culture in which they live. Often, a character feels alienated in his/her community or society due to race, gender, class or ethnic background. The texts below all contain a character who is ‘outcast’ or otherwise disconnected from society in some way, reflecting important ideas about both the character and the surrounding society’s assumptions, morality, and values. Choose a text and consider the questions below as you critically read the text. Then, craft a working thesis that suggests how this alienation is expressed in the text and why it is significant.
Culture is the way of life of a group of people. These people have similar characteristics such as a common ancestry, geographical location or even religious beliefs. Culture governs all facets of our lives. It determines our worldview on various issues as well as our beliefs, attitudes and moral compass. Culture, therefore, bestows us our identity, and it is important that one retains their culture. Culture is an indispensable part of the human existence. It shapes our lives as well as our value systems and gives us our sense of identity and belonging (See, 1998). Alienation from our cultures makes us lose our sense of identity and belonging, as seen in the reading Everyday Use. As such, it is crucial that we uphold and retain our culture so as to preserve who we are.
Is this information from an outside source? If so, remember to include an in-text citation
Remember that short story titles are in quotation marks.
Remember that your thesis
statements should state a claim
(your opinion of the work) and
the reasons you feel your claim
Alienation causes us to lose the sense of our heritage and by doing so, makes us lose our identity. Dee is alienated from her heritage. She has sought to change her name from Dee to Wangero in a bid to honor her African roots (Walker & Christian, 1994). However, by doing so, she distances herself from the heritage of her family. The name Dee has been passed down for generations in her family, honoring the line of strong women that came before her and bestows her her identity (Gale, 2016). She believes that taking on the name Wangero makes her shun the sign of racism and abuse (Walker & Christian, 1994). However, she does not understand that it links her to the strong women that came before her. She is confused about her heritage and does not even understand the new culture that she is trying to adopt. The name Wangero is supposed to be Wangari, but she is not aware (Gale, 2016). In her search for emancipation and connection to her original culture, she loses her sense of heritage and by doing so loses her true identity.
Alienation causes us to lose one’s connection with the family. Culture helps us keep our connection with the family. Even with the worldly influences such as education, one’s culture help’s them to interact and feel the bond of family with members of their kin. Alienation from one’s culture causes a rift in one’s family relationships and leaves without the bond of family love. Dee is seen to be distant from her family. Maggie seems nervous and fidgety before and when Dee comes to the home. Mama has to hold her to prevent her from running into the house once Dee arrives (Walker & Christian, 1994). Dee had never appreciated her home and the way of life of her mother and sister. She causes discord once she asks for the quilts and tells them that they do not understand their heritage because they plan to use the quilts rather than preserving them. She urges Maggie to leave the simple life she lives as it is a new age for Black people (Walker & Christian, 1994). All this is because she is alienated from her culture. Her new ways intimidate her mother and sister, and her lack of appreciation of the quilts makes it an issue when she asks for them. Her education and materialistic nature do not allow her to understand the contentedness of her mother and sister in their simple life (Gale, 2016). This makes her not relate well with her family. Alienation has clearly affected the family ties in this family.
Is this a proper noun?
Do you need to show ownership here?
Alienation can also cause one to lose their understanding of their history, which is necessary for self-discovery. One’s history is essential to their life. It allows us to appreciate where we have come from and the achievements of those before us. It also impacts values that guide us on the road to self-discovery and self-improvement. Dee does not understand the history of her culture nor does she understand the history of her African roots. She does not appreciate that the quilts are living history that connects the user with the previous generations of strong women from the family (Walker & Christian, 1994). The quilts show the resilience of the family to face all obstacles and the achievements of the previous generations. By using them, one connects with these generations. Her African roots are also unclear to her, as is seen by her using the name Wangero, which is in fact supposed to be Wangari (Gale, 2016). Her alienation has made her unable to understand her heritage, and this denies her connection with her ancestors. She, therefore, remains in a state of limbo, unable to achieve self-discovery.
In conclusion, one’s culture is vital to their life. It allows one to know who they are and guides one’s life by offering essential value systems that will help them improve the quality of their lives in the future. Alienation causes the individual to lose one’s sense of heritage and consequently lose their identity. It also causes one to lose their connection with their family as well as lose their understanding of their history which is vital to the process of self-discovery. It is, therefore, paramount that one retains their culture. Culture is an indispensable part of the human existence. It shapes our lives as well as our value systems and gives us our sense of identity and belonging (See, 1998). Alienation from our cultures makes us lose our sense of identity and belonging, as seen in the reading Everyday Use. As such, it is crucial that we uphold and retain our culture so as to preserve who we are.
Good job on your conclusion. You do a good job of restating your thesis, summarizing your main points, and wrapping up
Gale, C. (2016). A Study Guide to Alice Walker’s Everyday Use. Farmington Hills: Gale, Cengage Learning.
See, L. (1998). Human behavior in the social environment from an African American perspective. New York: Haworth Press.
Walker, A. & Christian, B. (1994). Everyday use. New Brunswick, N.J: Rutgers University Press