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The Pros and Cons of Assimilation In everyones life there are elements of culture and language that both play a role in our society The essays If Black English Isnt a Language Then Tell Me What Is written by James Baldwin and Children of a Marriage written by Richard Rodriguez discuss how their influences can be either positive or negative They also talk about how language and culture are continuously evolving and how they are the basis for todays worldLanguage plays a very important role in our society It is our means of communication Without a common language a group of people cannot function together As Baldwin writes If two black people at the bitter hour of the worlds history had been able to speak to each other the institution of chattel slavery could never have lasted as long as it did When they were brought here they were from various tribes with different languages Baldwin explains how language is also a political instrument means and proof of power It is the most vivid and crucial key to identity It reveals the private identity and connects on with or divorces one from the larger public or communal identity He writes how in some cases it can be dangerous to speak certain languages To open your mouth in England is if I may use black English to put your business in the street You have confessed your parents your youth your school your salary your self-esteem and alas your future Rodriguez says how to the Latin-Americans Spanish which is their native language is also their pride The symbol of Hispanic culture has been the tongue of flame - Spanish Latin-Americans chooses to speak Spanish in-order to preserve their culture Rodriguez looks at culture as more of a spiritual thing Rodriguez portrays a fear of losing culture which is ultimately only a link to your past By assimilating with other cultures you lose your own
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