Essay - Teaching - Social Issues Mother Tongue the Purpose of This...

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Teaching - Social Issues

Mother Tongue

The purpose of this paper is to introduce, discuss, and analyze the essay "Mo*****r Tongue," by Amy Tan. Specifically, it will analyze how the author uses rhetorical strategies to make her argument, while critiquing cultural st*****ards. Amy ***** writes of the different forms ***** English she ***** in her life, while illustrating the myriad ways that people express themselves depending on their audience and their needs. Everyone uses ***** phrases ***** ********** depending on their surroundings and their goals. Tan's essay applies to all of us, and because of *****, it is easier to read and easier ***** apply to everyday and classroom situations.

Throughout Amy Tan's essay, she compares the English she uses everyday, to the ***** she ***** with family and close friends. She uses the English she has learned as a *****ol to express ***** stilted English th*****t makes up her cultural memories and the words of her mother. She writes, "But to me, my *****'s ***** is perfectly clear, perfectly natural. It's my mother tongue. Her language, as I hear it, is vivid, direct, full ***** observation and imagery. That was the language that helped shape ***** way I saw things, expressed things, made sense of the world" (Tan). Therefore, some ***** Tan's earliest memories include memories of her mother's stilted English, which is both comforting ***** cultural to her. She knows ***** ***** education and ideas are not stilted, but also recognizes ***** her limited ***** of speaking might make her appear "limited" or less than perfect to other listeners. She notes, "I've *****d ***** terms used, '***** *****,' for example. But they seem just as bad, as if everything is limited, including people's perceptions of the limited Engl*****h speaker" (Tan). ***** recognizes the way people speak may categorize them for listeners, ***** yet that categorization could often not be further from the truth. How a person *****s is as much a part of ***** ***** upbringing as it is about formalized and wr*****ten language, as Tan's experience clearly indicates. Her culture is interwoven with her *****, and so, ***** has many d*****ferent options open to her to communicate, and ***** style depends ***** as ***** on her audience as her education and understanding of the language. In fact, Tan notes, "Sociolog*****ts and linguists probably will tell you ***** a *****'s developing language skills ***** more influenced by peers. But I do think that the language spoken in ***** *****, especi*****y in immigrant families which are more insular, plays a large role in shaping the language of ***** child" (Tan). Families play an import*****t part in the development of their children, ***** language is an important ***** of that development. Tan's embarrassment about ***** mother's English is just one part of the culture ***** ********** her as she grew up. To combat her embarr*****sment, she used Engl*****h as a tool to create an astonishing career for herself. Thus, T***** used the ***** of her youth to form her future.


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