First Paper - Chinmaya 1 Nikhil Chinmaya Professor...

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Chinmaya 1 Nikhil Chinmaya Professor Hornberger English 110 12 March 2008 Anzaldua’s “How to Tame a Wild Tongue” has a very unorthodox approach towards her eventual thesis on the broad topic of Linguistic Terrorism towards her native Chicano Language and this created many problems after I read it the first time. After reading this the first time, I had many conflicting views about how she approached her controversial thesis, and how she repeatedly attacked the Anglo community and continually asserted their ignorance for the learning of other cultures. This distain towards the Anglo community can be seen in this passage when she states “…and as long as I have to accommodate the English speakers rather than having them accommodate me, my tongue will be illegitimate” (59). However, after reading this passage I was strongly disgusted and wanted to show Anzaldua that her demands were ridiculous and foolhardy while her basis of rational thought was heavily biased. After digesting this piece, with my own experiences I felt that Anzaldua’s writing was potent and effective because of her awkward style and bland syntax, which she displayed throughout the piece while especially stressing this blandish preference during the important points of her text, however her fatal blunder occurred at the end of this piece when she states: Los Chicanos, how patient we seem, how very patient. There is the quiet of the Indian about us. We know how to survive. When other races have given up their tongue, we’ve kept ours. We know what it is to live under the hammer blow of the dominant norteamericano culture. But more than we count the blows, we count the days the weeks the years the centuries
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Chinmaya 2 the eons until the white laws and commerce and customs will rot in the deserts they’ve created, lie bleached. Humildes yet proud quietos yet wild, nosotoros los mexicanos-Chicanos will walk by the crumbling ashes as we go about our business. Stubborn, preserving, impenetrable as stone, yet possessing a malleability that renders us unbreakable, we, the mestizas, will remain. (63-4) While this paragraph both shocked and surprised me, it caused me to believe that Gloria Anzaludua is a hypocrite because of her relative success in American society though she claims that Chicanos are being subjected to the repeated blows of a figurative hammer. Although she has many valid points throughout her piece, on various topics, one of them being cultural assimilation. I felt utterly disconnected, because I felt that though my culture is very important to
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First Paper - Chinmaya 1 Nikhil Chinmaya Professor...

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