If We Only Spoke Two Languages

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A Bilingual Wake Up Call In “If We Only Spoke Two Languages,” the author evaluates his experiences with attempting to hold on to his native language while being put into a monolingual society. He also petitions for America to become multilingual to keep its “economic and political edge”. This argument is relevant to things that are going on in the American society as we speak along with the manner in which we as a country should handle it. The author uses his personal experience to shape his argument that a monolingual society is detrimental to the development of America as a country. Along with his own experience, he also tells what the audience what is going on in their own country. He is not only telling his side of the story, he is educating the audience on something that they may need to form an opinion on. Dorfman begins by examining the two methods of acquiring a student who does not speak English to learn English. The two methods used are the bilingual method and the immersion method. Dorfman is more partial to the bilingual approach because it teaches “subjects like math and science in the student’s native language and gradually [introduces] English.” Using the logical approach, Dorfman comes to the conclusion that this is the best choice for students because it allows them to keep their cultural identity and also transition into the society of America. When discussing the immersion approach that was chosen by California, he uses logic saying that this could hinder the United States from cultural growth. “The referendum was ostensibly about education, but the deeper and perhaps subconscious choice was about the future of America.” He mainly discusses the pros of the bilingual approach, possibly giving the reader the idea that there are no cons to the use of the bilingual approach. This can interpreted as one-sided, but since this article is meant to

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