The Bilingual Difference Essay

1790 Words8 Pages
The linguistic and cultural clashes that children encounter, and how they negotiate between their ethnic and American “mainstream” cultures, and how these clashes and problems influence their relationship with their parents and their ethnic identities as a whole and how they were dealt with differently as we look at two stories dealing with two girls who are both coming of age in different society from where they originally came from. Jairy’s Jargon a story written by Carmen-Gloria Ballista, is a story that encounters the life of a young girl coming of age in Puerto Rico, except she’s originally from New York. Milly Cepeda’s story, Mari y Lissy, is a story about twin sisters who differ in personality and are often at odds with each…show more content…
Cultures can change with a dialect, as in the case of Jary. Her “Spanglish” is different from the Puerto Rican Spanish spoken amongst the children in her new school. To them she sounds funny, and vice versa. Children can be cruel when accepting new students, imagine a student that is far from the culture?      Jary is almost rescued by Miss Hernandez a teacher who spoke both English and Spanish, (and that is Puerto Rican Spanish). Jary befriends Miss Hernandez, as Miss Hernandez helps Jary learn the new language, and remember New York. Even though Miss Hernandez helps Jary with her new transition Jary still has to do a lot on her own. Jary is what many of the kids call a “Nuyorican”, Jary’s parents are also Nuyoricans meaning, they were born and raised in New York but are still Puerto Rican. Jary’s parents do not feel the pressure of the culture clash as heavy as Jary.      As Jary begins to sing songs like the other children, she notices she uses the same words as them, and that she starting to speak like them. These clashes influence her relationship with her parents, in that they began to not understand her, for example; Jary would say “!que brutal!” , (which literally translates into “how brutal”) when describing something she thought was interesting or nice. Her parents not understanding began to correct her, but she eventually explained to her.
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