Literature & Composition
June 26, 2011
Assimilation into American society: “Immigrants” written by Pat Mora
In the poem, “Immigrants”, it talks about how immigrants want their children to be welcomed into American society. They will do whatever they need to, to get their children to be as American as possible; even if they lose some of their own culture in the process. The poem, “Immigrants” by Pat Mora, has many underlying themes. The main theme of how immigrants assimilate into American culture has a deep connection to freedom and responsibility. This poem is all about freedom and responsibility that the immigrants have to their children. They want to be able to give their children what they never had. In exchange, their children may lose part of their original culture as well as their individuality.
In the poem, “Immigrants” there is three underlying themes that are trying to be conveyed to the reader. The poem’s main intention is to show what immigrants go through when they are trying to adapt to their new lives in the United States. One of the themes is how the immigrants have to go through incorporating themselves into a different culture than their own. Another theme of the poem is how the immigrants try to hide their culture and at the same time keep some of it in a new country where different is not always accepted. The poem shows that the immigrants hide their culture by saying, “whisper in Spanish or Polish when the babies sleep, whisper in a dark parent bed…” (761). Lastly, a third theme deals with the pressure and angst that immigrants continuously feel about whether or not their children will be accepted into American culture. The line of the poem that expresses this is, “will they like our boy, our girl, our fine American boy, our fine American girl?” (761). Even though the immigrants have done their best to make their children into American citizens they still have the fear that “real Americans” won’t accept them.
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