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 st*****ards. Amy Tan writes of the different forms ***** English she ***** in her life, while illustrat*****g the myriad ways that people express themselves depending on their audience and ***** needs. Everyone uses ***** phrases and expressions ***** on their surroundings and their goals. Tan's essay applies to all of us, and beca*****e of *****, it is easier to read and easier ***** apply to everyday and classroom situati*****s.

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


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