Does the educationalsystem strip awaychildren’s culturalIdentity?“Rather than becoming multicultural,rather than becoming a person ofseveral languages, rather thanbecoming confident in your knowledgeof the world, you become just theopposite. You end up in college havingto apologize for the fact that you nolonger speak your native language.” - Richard Rodriguez
Essential Questions Who is Richard Rodriguez? What are his views on bilingual education? How are his views on multiracial Americans and identity?
Background InformationHunger of Memory was his first book. He shared his journey of becoming Americanized, which separated him from his family and culture. He was called a Pocho, because he became enable to speak Spanish with fluency anymore.Wrote a collection of Essays called - Brown: The Last Discovery of America . (Won the National Book Critics Award)His ethnicity is mixed of Mexican and Indian. He grew up in Sacramento, California during the 1950’s. Later in his life he spoke about his homosexuality.He is the editor for the Pacific News Service in San Francisco. Also, a contributing editor of Harper’s and the Sunday opinion section of the Los Angeles Times.Television appearances include: PBS and NewsHour with Jim LehrerA large majority of his works explores cultural identity in America
STOP and THINK: Are heritage and identity interchangeable?Watch this interview with Richard Rodriguezhttp://youtu.be/zbcRQYMRqD0
Heritage versus Identity• Larger than the • 1st person singular individual • Presumption that• Identity apart from “I” am (insert name) oneself • Consumed with self• To be a part of a family/tribe/nation
American Melting Pot ”The best metaphor of America remains the dreadful metaphor [of] the Melting Pot” --Quoted from Days of Obligation: An Argument with my Mexican FatherQuestion: Why do you think he would refer to this metaphoras something positive and negative?
Scott London: Interview with Richard RodriguezLondon: So how would you define diversity?Rodriguez: For me, diversity is not a value. Diversity is what you find in Northern Ireland.Diversity is Beirut. Diversity is brother killingbrother. Where diversity is shared -where I sharewith you my difference - that can be valuable. Butthe simple fact that we are unlike each other is aterrifying notion.I have often found myself inforeign settings where I became suddenly aware that Iwas not like the people around me. That, to me, isnot a pleasant discovery. Full Interview: http://www.scottlondon.com/interviews/rodriguez.htComment: As future educators, how do we address Comment: As future educators, how do we addressdiversity in the classroom? It should not be a “terrifying diversity in the classroom? It should not be a “terrifyingnotion” to be different from ones peers. notion” to be different from ones peers.
Things to think about….A great quote mentioned in a New York Times article titled,Greater Than All the Parts says,“The notion of African-Americans as a minority is one born of adistinct and terrible history of exclusion -- the sin of slavery, laterdecades of segregation, and every conceivable humiliation visited upon apeople. . . . To say, today, that Hispanics are becoming Americaslargest minority is to mock history. If brown is to be theAmerican future, then black must be part of the mixture.(FULL ARTICLE)http://www.nytimes.com/2002/04/07/books/greater-than-all-the-parAre bilingual educators today helping children find the balance betweenusing their native language and English that is spoken in the classroom?According to Rodriguez, he believes these teachers do not recognize thata socially disadvantaged child considers the language spoken at home tobe private and should not be shared elsewhere. (Holds a stance against bilingualeducation)
“What I needed to learn in school was that I had the right - and the obligation - to speak the public language of los gringos” - Richard Rodriguez.This cartoon is an exaggeration of why Spanish speaking children are fearful and intimated to learn English. In many homes a native language is spoken, which a child considers to be private and English is spoken in public. At a young age Rodriguez believed that English wasn’t his to use, butonce his family began to use it in the home he became less fearful. However, other issues began to arise once his English surpassed his parents.
ReferencesRichard Rodriguez: Books and Learning [Video]. (2008).http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jz2wLvK9p9Q&feature=relatedRichard, R. (n.d.). Interview by Scott London [Interview]. A View Fromthe Melting Pot: An Interview with Richard Rodriguez., Retrieved fromhttp://www.scottlondon.com/interviews/rodriguez.htmlRichard Rodriguez [Video]. (2011).http://youtu.be/zbcRQYMRqD0Rodriguez, R.(1982). Hunger of Memory: The Education of RichardRodriguez. Bantam Books.Walton, A. (2002, April 7). Greater than all the parts. The New YorkTimes. Retrieved fromhttp://www.nytimes.com/2002/04/07/books/greater-than-all-the-parts.html
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