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18-4 Final Project 2: Critical Analysis EssayMari QuinnEnglish, Southern New Hampshire UniversityENG-122-XS043 English CompositionProf. Grace NicholasDecember 18, 2020
2The article "Mother Tongue," written by Amy Tan and published in 2006 under theWeekly Reader Corporation, discusses the common assumption that people who speak brokenEnglish are not as intelligent as native English speakers. The text was written in the context ofdiscrimination towards minorities based on English quality. Specifically, it discusses prejudicetowards Asian ethnicities using language as an indication of intelligence. The text examines theauthor's early life experiences and her relationship with her Asian, non-native mother. It explainsthe impacts of discrimination based on language quality towards immigrants on their children.Noting the difference in treatment, the author decides to write her book "The Joy Luck Club,"using simple English to represent Asian-American English in the literature (Tan, 2006). Amy Tanwrote this article to raise awareness and clarify that speaking limited English is not an indicationof low intelligence (Tan, 2006). The article's main claim of assuming a person's English languageability indicates a person's intelligence is incorrect and harmful is well-argued because the authormakes appropriate tone, style, and language choices, provides her mother's intelligence assuggestive evidence, and links the assumption to discrimination.Tan supports her purpose of raising awareness with her style and tone. The audience sheneeds to reach to spread awareness needs to be broad, reaching every American with an easilyunderstandable but exciting writing piece. The author speaks to the reader in a conversationalstyle, using the first person to describe her feelings and increase relatability. Her introductionmentions that she is "not a scholar of English literature", easing the reader about any possibleworries about the article's nature and difficulty (Tan, 2006, p.20). The sentences are not too longto increase the text's difficulty and include words commonly known by the reader. Exceptionsthat are less widely known are defined in a vocabulary section at the bottom of every page tokeep the piece's entertainment value. Reflecting on her own experiences, including challenges
3faced in her childhood, she uses a sentimental tone. Tan uses negatively connotated words suchas "ashamed," "forced," and "bothered" to express her sadness about the social stigma around"broken" English, aiming at the readers' empathy (P.21, 22.) Feeling for the author in hersituation increases the readers' sympathy for other people in their environment, aiming to reducethe reader's stigma and discrimination. Amy Tan gradually changes her tone towards a happierand more positive word choice. Describing the earlier called "broken" English as "simple" andfocusing on the "passion" hidden behind the English spoken by immigrant-Asian Americans, she

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