mothers tongue

Topics: English language, Second language, United Kingdom Pages: 3 (538 words) Published: October 19, 2014
Mother Tongue
Amy Tan
Amy Tan is an Asian writer who grew up in America and had to over come her difficulties with the English language. She grew up with her mother who didn’t speak proper language she spoke “broken” English. During Amy’s childhood the broken English affected her and made her different from the other kids. Tan has faced many difficulties in her life because of her mothers broken English which she grew up with: it has developed her to be the person she is today. When Tan was younger her mother embarrassed her because of the broken English she spoke. Tan felt what she had to say wasn’t important. However her friends only understood 50% of what Tan’s mother said while others didn’t understand her at all. Even as a young child she would have to handle all communication for her mother such as ordering for her in restraunts too talking on the phone to the stock broker: “To me. My mother's English is perfectly clear, perfectly natural. That language helped shape the way I saw things, expressed things, made sense of the world” (635). As Tan got older her opinion of her mother changed she realized that her broken English helped mold her to the strong person that she had become. Tan’s mother affected her life because of the “broken” English she spoke around the household. The “fractured” English affected tan because she was influenced by improper ways of the English language. Her mom used a lot of slang, which made tan not learn the correct ways to speak English properly: “Du Yousong having business like fruit stand” (634). Tan had to listen to her mother speak like this everyday and it affected her to catch on to her mothers bad habits. In Tan’s Adulthood teachers told her that she would never succeed in English that her true ability was in math and science. Tan has noticed that other Asian- American students who’s English spoken at home is also described as “broken” have teachers steering them away from writing and into math and science. Tan...


Cited: Tan, Amy. “Mother Tongue.” The Norton Field Guide To Writing With Reading.
Richard Bullock and Maureen Daly Goggin. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, 2006.633. Print.
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