“Se Habla Espanol”

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“Se Habla Espanol” The essay, “Se Habla Espanol,” was written by Tanya Barrientos. Tanya writes about the hardships she goes through trying to speak the language that she pushed away from because of racial stereotypes. Being stereotyped Tanya did not want anything to do with being a Latina, or speaking the Spanish language. Once she realized how society had changed, Tanya tried to regain the culture she had lost during her childhood. Tanya wants to inspire those of her culture that can relate to what she is going through, while also asking for acceptance within the Latino community. Tanya was brought to the United States by her parents who were fluent in both languages. One parent was an artist and the other a psychology professor. Her parents only wanted what was best for her, so they only allowed them to read, write, and speak English. Tanya’s parents did this because they wanted her to fit into this, “red, white and blue world.”(pg 8) They wanted her to be able to speak the English language without a hint of the Spanish accent. Her parents said that by doing so people would look past the ethnicity and only see an American girl. Tanya tries to relate with her audience by speaking a bit of Spanish in her essay. Some of the words she uses are Latinos, ingles, and gringa. By using these words she can relate to both the American and Latino audiences, while also showing her knowledge of the Spanish language. This relates to the subject because she was raised as an American, but wants to be accepted by the Latino culture. During Tanya’s childhood education she learned how to be an American, but she did not learn how to be a Latina. She learned how to read, write, and speak English, but she did not learn the Spanish culture. This was both good and bad for her. This was positive for her because she felt accepted by the American society,

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