How to Tame a Wild Tongue
Differences are what define the world around us. Whether a subtle contrast of two colors or a comparison of two nations, our dissimilarities shape our identities. Many people find it difficult to accept the differences they have with other people. It is easy with similarities, because they are within our boundaries or areas in which we have experience. People have a tendency to shun things they do not understand, to oppress the unfamiliar. To be confronted with a different opinion or way of living is uncomfortable. It challenges the ideas we are familiar with and the mental sets we have developed into concrete habits. In the essay by Gloria Anzaldua, How to Tame a Wild Tongue, Anzaldua provides us with her story of oppression. As a Spanish-speaking individual brought up in an American education system, she was hard-pressed by her teachers to forget her roots and adapt to an American way of thinking and speaking. Although she identified directly with Mexican culture and traditions, she saw the North American influences invading the roots of her identity. In her opinion this influence was unacceptable. She describes this way of living as a “borderland” or a place “where two or more cultures edge each other, where people of different races occupy the same territory, where under, lower, middle, and upper classes touch, where the space between two individuals shrinks with intimacy.” These borderlands exist in many different ways. There are physical places and intangible ideas throughout the world that fight for territory. Among people, animals, and even plants there is a struggle to be the dominant species and to be in charge. An example of this lies within religion. Whether Christian, Catholic, Buddhist, or Muslim, each religion is attempting to gain ground. Each religion wants their ideas to be the center of all of mankind’s functions. When comparing two religions one will find many similarities. As powerful as congruencies can...
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