Amy Tan Mother Tongue Summary

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Some information about the author: She was born in China and studied in a local Chinese school for a few years before switching to an International school. It provided her the chance to experience first hand the real meaning behind "broken English", and understand how non-standard varieties of English have their own rules and shape a community 's sense of identity. In this article, she shares her views on Amy Tan 's "Mother Tongue" and talks about the power of language.

I was reading Amy Tan 's "Mother Tongue" when I came across the idea of language being "fractured and broken". She gave examples of how her mother’s limited English caused her to be given poor service at department stores, banks and restaurants. Some may say that their
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This reminds me of my experience of learning English from a Chinese teacher in a local school and the difference I felt from being in a western style classroom. I remember the first time, when my teacher started introducing herself in English, she obviously had a Chinese accent to her English, which led to me thinking of her being an inexperienced teacher. However, when I heard our English teacher speak, I notice a huge difference between both of the teacher’s English-speaking skills. My English teacher was speaking more clearer and quicker than the Chinese teacher, making it sound more conviving. But because the way they use their words was so different from the "Chinese version" of the English I have listened to all these years, it took me a longer time to understand what my English teacher says. Think back to those years, I am shocked by my different reaction towards the two situations, I never thought I would ever look at people in a stereotypically way based on their language ability. With realizing it, many of us would think less of non-Chinese speakers, but does that mean I actually learned less from my Chinese teacher? Of course not, in the end I learned the same from both teachers. As a matter of fact, I learned a bit more from my Chinese teacher because she knew the language nuances from being exposed to two different
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