Thursday, January 20, 2011

"On Being a Mexican American"

     In Jose Mendoza's short essay describing his Hispanic childhood and then his Americanized adulthood, some interesting points are brought up that resonate with me. The author tells of his transition from a person engulfed in his ancestor's native culture to a man who has set these traditions aside for new ones. I hypothesize that when he became "anglocized", he truly became an American who now embraced this lifestyle. I feel that to be a bona-fide  American, a person cannot have culture. America contains such an enormous spectrum of people and backgrounds that a pronounced identity isn't evident to me. In this regard, I would be an American because my European roots have been all but suppressed in preceding generations. Maybe this fact is why my family is so extremely open to new experiences and especially new foods. In fact, we fervently seek out culture via restaurants and traveling. 
     In my view, most immigrants come to the United States to obtain a better life, more prosperity or safety in our tolerant land. However, they aren't willing to turn away from their culture to become American; they only seek solace and opportunity. With Mendoza, his ancestral identity was still "Mexican" for the initial years of his life but they appeared to reside in an only Mexican neighborhood. Therefore, they only left the geographic vicinity of Mexico, not the cultural vicinity. So these people retained their culture and were only pseudo-Americans. However, this isn't a bad thing because everyone who lacks culture wants it but I believe that it is a sacrifice to be apart of a culture-less nation. 

No comments:

Post a Comment