Type of paper:
United States, Culture, Identity, America, English, Language, People, Difference
Language is a one way of identifying an individual or a group of people from a region or culture. The identity of a person can be known by listening to one’s as he or she speaks the native or other language, for example English (Tan 341). Other people are able to identify someone as different, therefore shaping one’s identity.
Amy Tan shows that language will affect and determine a speaker’s identity in a greater culture (340-341). For example, a Korean student living and studying in the United States of America has to learn the local culture in order to succeed in his/her interactions with local people and in the studies. The language and accent of someone in a new mainstream culture, or a new region, shapes their identity within that community (English Education n.d). In this respect, other people are able to identity that person based on how they speak (Making a Difference n.d). Tan writes that a person’s language and dialects contributes to how people perceive and know them as individuals (81).
People from certain regions of the world have certain accents and cultural identities. These identities are shaped by the language that they speak (Making a Difference n.d; 341). Therefore, people in a mainstream, culture are able to identify non-native speakers of English based on how they speak the English language. Second language learners can be identified when they speak ‘broken English’ or limited language (78-80).
In conclusion, the language one speaks is a stable way of establishing the identity of the speaker. Someone can easily conclude that a certain speaker come from Korea, China, Latin America, England or Jamaica, for example. Language is therefore an important tool for shaping identities of speakers.
Making a Difference. Language and Identity. N.p. n.d. Web. 16 April 2013.
Amy, Tan. Mother Tongue. 2013. Web. 16 April 2013.
English Education. Language and Identity. N.p. n.d. Web. 16 April 2013.
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