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Carly 9/5 Post

There are many stereotypes and negative connotations that come along with the term “immigrant.” However, today immigrants are all around us whether we know it or not. Many immigrants traveled long and far and endured a lot of pain and hardships to get to their new home. I believe it is time we start accepting them and welcoming them into our communities. I respect the way Gloria Anzaldua sticks up for herself and other hispanic immigrants. She states, “if you want to really hurt me, talk badly about my language. Ethnic identity is twin skin to linguistic identity–I am my language. Until I can take pride in my language, I cannot take pride in myself. Until I can accept as legitimate Chicano Texas Spanish, Tex Mex, and all the other languages I speak, I cannot accept the legitimacy of myself.” Language is an important part of someone’s identity, and because of Gloria’s mixed-cultural background she feels that she is judged just for being herself. 

In the two chapters in “How The Other Half Lives” by Jacob Riis, we are given examples from Italian and Chinese immigrants about the way they live as immigrants in the United States. They endure so many stereotypes and harsh living conditions just because of their immigrant status. I believe these negative connotations of immigrants have direct correlation to imperialism. Americans look at themselves as far more superior than others no matter where they come from. The fact that immigration into America has only gotten harder and more complex over time proves that Americans feel that they are simply better than other ethnicities and don’t want to accept change. Personally, I believe Americans need to accept change and be more inviting to other perspectives and cultures because it could certainly have a positive effect on our country.

 

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5 Comments

  1. Elina Bhagwat Elina Bhagwat

    I thought it was really interesting how important the role of a language plays into one’s identity. However, in the same sense language is also used to show distinctions between groups of people and ultimately marginalize the group that speaks a minority language. Even if people of the same cultural backgrounds speak the same language, their proficiency is a cause for judgment.

  2. Mia Slaunwhite Mia Slaunwhite

    Today, 2020, we are still reminded of stereotypes. For example, being a person who likes a lot of pasta — “oh you must be Italian”. Like you said Stereotypes are everywhere. It’s tough to get away from them.

  3. Olivia Cranshaw Olivia Cranshaw

    I agree, as we have stated before in class: the United States has no defined culture and “Americaness” is defined much more by region rather than by a singular identity. This adds to the insanity of the immigration process as the US as we really have no right setting quotas for “cultural reasons” if we have no defined culture ourselves.

  4. Mohamad Kassem Mohamad Kassem

    I think it is really sad that people still judge others based on stereotypes and look down upon others based on the language they speak. I think the idea of American exceptionalism plays an important role here as Americans tend to think that they are better than others and have the right to judge them if they live in the US and speak a different language that isn’t English.

  5. Henry Groves Henry Groves

    I totally agree with the points you are making about accepting these immigrants and to praise the hardships that they have been through to get here, instead of stereotyping them based off of identity and the fact that they are an “immigrants”.

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