“Mother Tongue” by Amy Tan is the short story about the importance of language and how it is a key for communication. Tan emigrated from China to Oakland, California and she was a first generation of Asian-American. The author is very fascinated by the language and she believes that the language has the power of emotions, a visual image, a complex idea, and a simple truth. She also believes that there are many different types of “Englishes”. In the short story, Tan talks her story of the English she speaks, and how much people her around can change the way you converse. For example, at home, she speaks to her mother in a “broken” English so her mother can understand the conversation. When she is talking to people she works with, she uses
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Tan writes this about her experience, “I found myself conscious of the English I was using, the English I do use with her . . .My husband was with us as well, and he didn’t notice any switch in my language. And then I realized why . . . it has become our language of intimacy” (Tan 164).
In collection 1 there are three important selections, we have read, those three selections are Balboa by Sabina Murray, Blaxicans by Richard Rodriquez, and Mother Tongue by Amy Tan, these stories are all different in many ways, they all have different points in life like going from good to bad, and disrespected to respect. In the short story Balboa when Balboa left his homeland, he was close to nothing compared to other people, “Balboa the gambling pig farmer, who, in an effort to escape his debt, has found himself at the very edge of the world.” (Murray 78) This quote shows that when Balboa left his homeland all they saw him, as was a no good pig farmer who was in debt and was trying to escape.
Being Respectful Costs Nothing Reading the article “Mother Tongue” by Amy Tan has made me thinking a lot these last days about “standard” and “broken” English. The writer gives a lot of ideas, but in my opinion the main idea is “RESPECT”. The bad respect that is shown to everyone only because of a “broken” English.
Furthermore, through various past occasions in her life Amy Tan illustrates the struggle of her mother’s life when it comes to communicating to people in the general public, and how it has impacted her. The author also uses a comparison of her perspective from the past as a child to her more matured self to express the way she feels about her mother’s English. The author says” I was ashamed of her English” (119), but then through the twenty years Amy Tan has been with her husband. The English that Amy Tan has been ashamed of her mother has become the “language of intimacy” (121) among Amy Tan and her
He was curious about what they were talking about and tries to interpret the meaning form the facial expressions her mother made. She started learning English at Carol Morgan school and it was strange for her to see the American people and their appearances which differ from her. She got mixed up with Spanish and English as she starts to learn English.
Amy Tan's goal has changed slightly. While the Author wants to show the effect language has on one's daily life and how we perceive others who are different, she also wants to show how the language barrier affects our society overall. The first key point I identified after active reading was the sentence beneath the title. "Don't judge a book by its over, or intelligence by her English".
In the essay “Mother Tongue” by Amy Tan, the language has a significant impact on a person's life, whether in terms of education or by communicating with others. Amy Tan is a writer started from a young age and is also love language. Tan noticed that there are many types of languages. “For many American students, the language spoken at home is far different from one spoken in the school” (Tan, p. 99). For instance, Amy depicts that we have a perfectly different language that we speak within our own families and a different language that we speak out in public.
Tan has been able to use her rebellious nature to do what she loves, which is writing about language. Notably, she has been able to use this urge to do what she wants to do rather than execute what the society would expect her to do with her life. Additionally, I believe that the essay offers more than just the description of Tan’s love for language. I believe that language is a significant tool, which society members can use to comprehend and conceptualize social and cultural issues, as well as diversities. In the essay, I was able to learn on the different uses of language highlighting the contextual importance of language as a tool for communication.
Rhetorical Precis #4: “Mother Tongue” by Amy Tan Amy Tan’s purpose in her article “Mother Tongue” is to show the influence of her mother’s style of english. She also relates this to a more broad topic of the idea that there are many different types of english that people speak that are tailored to whoever they are speaking to. She begins this piece by stating plainly that she is not an english scholar. Instead of decreasing her credibility it actually increases it and paints this piece as a more personal set of observations rather than a bland overview of the entire language.
To be bilingual shows that one is capable of understanding two different cultures, however tri- or quad- linguality expresses the wisdom of multi-cultures one is capable of understanding; the spoken word with numerous voices, the written word. One of the strongest aspects of life is the ability to record it permanently. There have been many strong-willed, and well-spoken writers who clearly and delicately describe such bold accounts of the complications, endearments, and wondrous encounters life has. Changes often occur, dramatically or simply, whether it’s due to migration from home to foreign land, and/or complications of the heart, it becomes clear that expression is left untouched within the written word of oneself. Adeline Yen Mah and
Interesting books, articles, and readings always grab my attention, especially the ones which make me think and change the way I think. Both Maxine Hong Kingston’s Silence and E.W’s Why do writers abandon their native language are expressive, meaningful and thought-provoking readings. Although both of the characters left their homeland, in contrast to Jhumpa Lahiri who abandoned her native language and started to only write in Italian, Maxine Hong Kingston never abandoned her native language and even demonstrated herself only in it. First of all, both characters in the readings had origins of different countries, however, due to circumstances both of them moved to an environment different from their native one.
The statistics on Ethnologue.com shows that English has for a long time been the 3rd most spoken and written language in the world accounting for almost 372 million people. Since the early imperialism and colonization done by Britain, English has grown and has been assimilated into various cultures and societies. Global relations and communication through the United Nations along with the existence of 70 English-speaking countries, has been the key drivers of English becoming the most widely used language of communication. This “mainstream” English is the accepted language and has resulted in the complex issue of what should be considered language and why when people assimilate it into their culture, it is viewed as “broken”. Despite
Summary of "Mother Tongue" by Amy Tan In "Mother Tongue, Amy Tan writes about how her mother 's broken English affects her life. She begins this narrative essay by talking about the day she became aware of the different forms of English that she was using at home and during formal events. Amy says, "The talk was going along well enough, until I remembered one major difference that made the whole talk sound wrong. My mother was in the room. And it was perhaps the first time she had heard me give a lengthy speech, using the kind of English I have never used with her" (Tan 1).
Language is a universal instinct for communication. Using language to communicate is a natural process, and many may not realize the extent of its cultural influence. A culture may be defined by language, in the same way language is formative of culture and the individual. In “Mother Tongue,” Amy Tan recounts her childhood experience speaking “different Englishes” at home and in public, and how these contrasting dialects came to affect her thoughts and opportunities. The language a person grows up with can shape their identity, affecting not just how they communicate, but their perceptions, worldview, and awareness of cultural biases and norms.
She started her essay by telling a story, about the last speaker of a tribal language because of the death of Aka-Bo language and that she was lonely and had to learn other language to communicate with people. She then explained the definition of minority languages she said, “Is one that that is spoken in less than half of some counties and regions” such as, Mandarin. The essay claimed on the languages that endangered. In addition, she stated that the effect of death language lead to loss of the language and loss of culture that results in loneliness and losing the people you loved other than losing a language. Another aspect of the sadness of the language dying is that minority languages stands as a barrier for the progress and the value it is placed in that is mainly sentimental compared to majority languages based on the author’s point of view.