Richard Rodriguez’s autobiography, Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez, depicts his transformation from a socioeconomically disadvantaged first generation child of Mexican-American immigrants to a successful author, academic, and intellectual. During his metamorphosis, however, Rodriguez goes through an arduous process of assimilation that grants him a mastery of the English language and an embrace of American culture at the expense of his cultural heritage. His struggle to find a balance between these two worlds is prevalent throughout his autobiography, demonstrating the complex nature of identity and the manner in which language and culture impact it. In the text, identity seems to be formed at times around perceived similarities, …show more content…
According to Bucholtz and Hall, the tactic of adequation frequently forms the foundation of identity, which then tends to be impacted and transformed through a multitude of social variables in the pursuit of achieving group uniformity (Rodriguez, 1982, 383). Rodriguez illustrates the presence of this tactic as the autobiography details his change from a child of Mexican immigrants who struggled to speak English to an assimilated student with a proficiency in the language. Such an accomplishment is a source of particular pride for Rodriguez, who writes, "Proudly I announced...that a teacher had said I was losing all trace of a Spanish accent" (Rodriguez, 1982, 46). Rodriguez’s expression of joy at the loss of his accent highlights his successful adoption of new linguistic attributes that provide him with the ability to blend in seamlessly in the society of his peers. This enables him to assert a public identity that endows him with the means to express himself outside of his household, which ultimately establishes his complete identity. Although Rodriguez maintains his original private identity, this public addition through deliberate adequation allows him to identify with a broader group that has access to greater opportunities. As mentioned by Rodriguez in the text, “I became a man by becoming a public man” (Rodriguez, 1982, 6). By becoming a figure with the …show more content…
Bucholtz and Hall provide the contextual framework for this in the following passage: “Such speakers negotiate their identities with their peers by using language to variously play off dichotomies of …language (Spanish-speaking versus English-speaking), and immigrant generation (English dominant second generation versus Spanish-dominant first generation). Distinction…may …produce differentiation along multiple axes simultaneously” (Rodriguez, 1982, 385). In practice, the application of this tactic can result in the speakers of a specific language casting out members of their community who no longer appear to embrace their culture. Such is the case for Rodriguez, who is rebuked within the Mexican American community for losing his ability to speak Spanish. The rejection he experiences repeatedly occurs throughout the text, such as when a woman working in a Mexican grocery shop refers to him as “Pocho,” which means “‘colorless’ or ‘bland’” (Rodriguez, 1982, 29). Furthermore, a friend of Richard’s father who visited the family would tease him over his inability to speak Spanish, grabbing him painfully by the arms and asking him questions in the language (Rodriguez, 1982, 30). His uncle also explains, “‘what a
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A Rhetorical Analysis of Gloria Anzaldua’s, “How to Tame A Wild Tongue.” The latin american and mexican diaspora have continuously been at odds as to which dialect of spanish tends to be the most proper or rightfully utilized, in being examined by each other as while as the anglo society. Well the multi-ethnic diaspora that resides within Gloria Anzaldua’s (the writer) home, the Borderlands, tends to exude the conceptualization of multiple dialects of spanish speech into one.
Mr. Rodriguez quit his job at the People’s Tribune at the age of 39 to dedicate his life to writing and promoting his books. All of Luis Rodriguez’ books have the same overall theme, morality and reality. He wants his writing to portray his own imagination and truths that he grew up around. He traveled all over the world as a known author and poet in Rome, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Milan, Holland, Austria, Germany, Nicaragua, and
Espada shares his enthusiasm towards fighting for Spanish, “Defending the right of all Latinos to [speak Spanish]... creates in me a passion towards Spanish itself,” (18-20). Alike Espada, I believe that language is a right, and speakers of non-English languages should have the freedom to speak in a comfortable environment. I also believe that such tolerance is a stride towards making America a better, more united place. Rodriguez suffers from the lack of accommodation for him to maintain his native language while also learning English. After the public language seeps into his own home, Rodriguez tells of how he was affected.
Alvarez goes on to talk about a racism she faces as well. While the comments made were more out of ignorance than hate, it still bothers Alvarez. “We bought a house in Queens, New York, in a neighborhood that was mostly German and Irish, where we were the only ‘Hispanics.’ Actually, no one ever called us that. Our teachers and classmates at the local Catholic schools referred to us as ‘Porto Ricans’ or ‘Spanish.’
Throughout his text, he explains that he felt uncomfortable at school knowing he would have to speak this language that didn't connect to his identity. A significant quote from his text is “At last, seven years old, I came to believe what had been technically true since my birth; I was an American citizen (Rodriguez 120-122).” This quote means that after having to learn English and somewhat feeling secure with it, he imagined the truth of being American. Another important selection that stands out to me is “But the special feeling of closeness at home was diminished by then (Rodriguez 123-125).” The reason why this quote is so important is given the fact once he felt further comfortable with English, he lost that connection with his family through Spanish.
Rodriguez uses the public vs private analogy multiple times in his essay. Spanish being the private language meaning that fewer people speak and know it, and that because it is private, people who speak it are at a disadvantage. He says, “What I needed to learn in school was that I had the right- and the obligation- to speak the public language of los gringos. ”(6-8) In the first grade, Rodruguez had to alter his personal life and individuality because English had to no
In Richard Rodriguez’s essay “Blaxicans and Other Reinvented Americans,” Rodriguez main claim is that race can be defined by one’s community. In “A View From the Melting Pot: An Interview With Richard Rodriguez,” by Scott London, Rodriguez mentions that he grew up categorized as Hispanic, but, throughout time, when he left the place he called “home” he developed to a different race, eventually categorizing himself as Chinese. Rodriguez’s claim is supported by “Some Hispanics have too easily accustomed themselves to impersonating a third race, a great new third race in America.” Rodriguez is implying that based on someone 's community or surroundings, it reflects into a race. For instance, Rodriguez now considers himself Hispanic because he
1 Samantha Carrillo Ms. Alcala ELA 11 Period 3 14 August 2017 Within the essay “ Blaxicans and other Reinvented Americans “ by Richard Rodriguez, Rodriguez’s uses irony throughout his essay by stating to be Chinese but in reality, he is Hispanic. He also mentions how he is Mestizo, not only does he go by one race but by several races that in reality are not what he is. He identifies himself as Chinese because of fact that he lives in a Chinese city and well because he wants to be Chinese.
In the essay “How to Tame a Wild Tongue,” Gloria Anzaldua insists that one’s identity is deeply bonded to the language in which they speak. She explains how the Chicano language has developed and sustained abuse. She insists that Chicano is a whole, complete, and not a bastard language. Gloria warns, “If you really want to hurt me talk bad about my language.” Gloria becomes passionate about her wild tongue and encourages others to embrace theirs.
Richard Rodriguez’s claim about a person's identity is the using race as a basis for identifying Americans is not valid; culture should be what defines a identity. Richard Rodriguez says that newcomers were being “welcomed within a new community for reasons of culture. “ (136-137). Richard Rodriguez says that newcomers were welcomed when they were identified by their culture. Richard Rodriguez also says “I am Chinese, and that is because I live in a Chinese city and I want to be Chinese.“
Cofer addresses the cultural barriers and challenges that Latinos experience through emotional appeal, anecdotal imagery, parallelism and the use of effective periodic sentences. In her article, Cofer assesses the difficult cultural hurdles of Latin Americans with emotional appeal. She provides insight on her cultural barriers by first conveying the way she had to dress and her struggle, as it shows in this piece of text, “That morning I had organized… which to base my decision” (Cofer 5). This poignancy works to stress an agonizing feeling of uncertainty and restraint towards the author.
Richard Rodriguez essay “Blaxicans and Other Reinvented Americans” reveals Rodriguez’s attitudes towards race and ethnicity as they relate to personal identity. An evidence to support Richard Rodriguez’s claim in this section is when he says “ I am chinese, and that is because I live in a chinese city and because i want to be chinese”. (163-165) This evidence reveals, rodriguez point that ethnicity has nothing to do with race . He says that a person can choose their ethnicity based on the way they want to act and on things they want to be value. Rodriguez got used to the differences and actually started to like them.
To seek out change, you must believe that you deserve to be heard. To believe that you deserve to be heard, you must value your existence. Therefore, language allows Baca the space to present himself as a human being outside of the dehumanizing number which he is allotted, language acting as “a resource that allow[s him] to confront and understand [his] past [… and open] the way toward a future that [is] based[,] not on fear or bitterness or apathy[,] but on compassionate involvement and a belief that [he] belong[s]” (5). During his incarceration, “reading books became [Baca’s] line of defense against the madness,” the monotony, and the isolation which prisons often use to stifle their populations (214). However, when recognizing Baca’s growing self-esteem, it is important to acknowledge that his personal development is invariably tied to his identity as a Mexican-American.
In How to Tame a Wild Tongue by Gloria Anzaldua, the concept of language is tied to ethnic identity. There is an interconnection between language and identity. The attitude that members of the community where she lives have towards her way of speaking (Chicano Spanish) is highlighted. This results in harmful effects that impact her identity as well as the one of the Chicano citizens that live in the borders. It is clear that there is a totally different understanding of the world and by focusing on the context-centered lens, racism concepts are expressed in the text.
Rodriguez spoke about how his mother was often times discriminated against by white people because of the fact that she looked Mexican. She and her children were at a park wanted to sit at a table that was previously occupied by a white woman, and when the white woman came back and saw Rodriguez’s mother sitting at the table she demanded that she move, but since Rodriguez’s mother did not speak English the white woman immediately exclaimed “Go back to your country!”. Rodriguez’s mother didn’t have the privilege of knowing English, but the not all states have English as their official language. In the US the official languages are Spanish, French and