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 "Mother Tongue," by Amy Tan. Specifically, it will analyze how the author uses rhetorical strategies to make her argument, while cr*****iquing cultural standards. Amy ***** writes of ***** 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 ***** expressions ***** on their surroundings and their goals. Tan's essay applies to all of us, and because of this, it is easier to read and easier to apply to everyday and classroom situati*****s.

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

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