11. Do use an MLA heading and title. Also, do include in-text citations and a works cited entry for quoted OR paraphrased material
· 250 words
In two of the week’s featured writings, authors Amy Tan and Richard Rodriquez recount in essays their experiences growing up in a household where their parents wrestle with whether to abandon traditional values to take on those of the “American” culture. Rodriquez argues that learning English and in turn ‘forgetting’ some of his own native tongue helped him feel more American. America is a land made up of immigrants. While many call America “a melting pot,” others dispute this. For example, minister and Civil Rights activist, Jesse Jackson said in a 1988 speech that ‘America is a quilt” woven of many colors and cultures.
Questions to consider:
Reflect on our discussions and your readings to date. What role might tradition and/or myth play in the varying responses to these changing demographics? What does it mean to “be” American? Is it assimilation into a set of cultural ideals?’ Will taking on these values mean that you will be considered American? How can America deal with its changing demographics?
The ethnic and racial makeup of the American populace is changing. Similar to the waves of immigrants coming from Southern as well as Eastern Europe did a century earlier, the influx of new immigrants from Asia as well as Latin America have greatly increased the phenotypic and cultural diversity in the American population over the last few decades (Perez and Hirschman , 90). Furthermore, as a result of growing marriage rates and an increase in the number of people with mixed ancestry, distinctions among ethnic as well as racial groups are blurrier than they have ever been. The ethnic and racial composition of the American population is explained and presented in various ways, with various estimates and theories. Certain people believe that America will continue to be a melting pot or”the “browning of America,” with once-clear the distinction between races and ethnicities getting increasingly blurred (Rodriguez 50). This view is consistent with the notion that ethnicity and race have become less relevant in American cultural. While some immigrant groups are allowed to join an increasingly wealthy and larger white population, others are seeing new divisions in their racial identities emerging. Most people do not alter their ethnic identity to suit their needs, however, according to the circumstances, they might choose to highlight certain aspects more than other groups. For instance, someone who declares himself to be Mexican within the family might use this to describe himself at work but identify as American while traveling. People with mixed ancestry might be identified as Native Americans in one setting while being white in another. They have been “racialized” as a minority of underprivileged minority of black and brown. Cont…
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