"The Achievement of Desire" Summary
In Richard Rodriguez's "The Achievement of Desire" he talks about the issues he faced a "scholarship boy." Rodriguez was constantly caught between his two lives: school and home. As he got older, Rodriguez had become embarrassed with his parents education and broke away from his home life to focus on his school life, which was more important. Eager to learn more "anything to fill the hollow within me and make me feel educated." (202)
In the third grade, Rodriguez had officially begun to alienate his family. He would often be found in a closet reading to avoid doing chores or spending time with his family. He had chose school over his family, spending every waking moment engaged in school work and reading. Rodriguez read books like the Great Expectations, The Lives of the Saints, and Plato's Republic attempting to collect as much knowledge as he could. Even though, Rodriguez's family was supportive of his drive for educational success, he gives all credit to his teachers.
At the end of Rodriguez's education, while writing his dissertation in England, he over hears a two Spanish scholars conversing. This brought him back to his childhood and began trying to revisit a nonexistent childhood. After writing his dissertation in England, he came home to live with his parents once again and realized their actions were very similar. Even though he enjoyed the simple life he had spent with them he had realized he changed far too much. His years of hard work and dedication to success had made him into a different person, one that could never live the life of his parents and yearns for his past.
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