Writing paragraphs to Essay
Instructor: Leanne Drapeau
"Don't Call Me Hot Tamale"/"My Two Lives"
Comparison and Contrast points
"The moment I understood America well enough to tell her about herself as I saw her-the moment I began to express myself-America accepted my self-expression as a gift from me, and from everywhere hands reached out to help me."1
America has received immigrant waves from many countries around the world in various times of periods. They have brought their culture and their own sense about how to face their new lives in America. Immigrants try to maintain these cultural norms at home, while still integrating into American society. When the immigrants first arrived, Americans were curious about the newcomers. However, they still considered them as "more primitive races and cultures incompatible with Anglo-Saxon America”2 and created stereotypes which misrepresent immigrants and their behavior. Furthermore, Americans spread theories about genetic threats and "their hereditary predisposition of filthiness”3. Immigrant writers debunked these ideas writing as "informants of their native cultures they also frequently offered critical (…) descriptions of their adopted country, seeking to expose its ills and to enrich its culture.”4 These writers believe that "cultural differences do not imply levels of superiority or inferiority.”5 Judith Ortiz Cofer and Jhumpa Lahiri, two distinguished immigrant writers share this view point. Through their literature, they express pride of their cultural heritage and their commitment to enrich American culture by promoting the acceptance of their culture in American society, traditionally monoculture and unwilling to accept a multicultural society in transit to the future.
Both authors write about their personal experiences as members of families with different cultural backgrounds, compared to the American community. Ortiz Cofer came from Puerto Rico and brought her...
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