Covering By Kenji Yoshino

Decent Essays

Time goes on and people constantly change in order to benefit themselves. Each person wants to reach the point where he is seen as successful and acceptable in the eyes of society. Even if it means that he will end up succumbing to the pressures of assimilation, which can push happiness aside in order to reach success. Assimilation is only a part of reaching success because there are also personal identity and culture which can determine how much a person works or wants to achieve as well. In his essay “Covering: The Hidden Assault on Our Civil Rights”, Kenji Yoshino, who was once a Yale Law School professor, believes that people are sacrificing happiness and conformity and making room for assimilation on the basis of national origin …show more content…

Many times people have learned from past experiences that success alone does not necessarily lead to happiness. Instead a person will find that he is the happiest when he accomplishes a goal with success without having to adapt to what society believes is acceptable. All over the world each culture has certain guidelines which each person has to follow in order to be seen as acceptable. And most people learn to assimilate in order to blend in with the rest of society once he sees that he has not fully accepted the culture and its values as a whole. Take Kenji Yoshino, who throughout his whole life he was told that he had to “be one hundred percent American in America, and one hundred percent Japanese in Japan” (Yoshino 315) by his parents. But for Yoshino being American came out of him completely naturally, unlike being Japanese that even now he still has trouble connecting with. Which is why Yoshino 's parents enforced “tenacious practice, practice, practice crucial for excellence; rote repetition which is underrated in America” (Chua 52) by sending him and his sister every summer to a school in Japan in order to learn, not chemistry but how to be a true Japanese. Yoshino never quite grasped how to become a true Japanese despite what his parents did, so instead he turned towards assimilation because “while biological traits were necessary to [his] status as ‘true Japanese’, they were not sufficient. [His] race

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