Compare and Contrast of “Mother Tongue” and “Everyday Use””Mother Tongue” and “Everyday Use” are two pieces of literature that seem to have very little in common. However, some of the underlying themes are very similar. “Mother Tongue” is an article written by Amy Tan. Tan’s most famous book is The Joy Luck Clubwhich was an award winning novel, film, and play. She is a child of Chinese immigrants whose father and brother died of brain tumors. Her mother then revealed that she had another family in China along with three children. Tan studied English and Linguistics in college even though she was better at Math and Science. “Everyday Use” is a fictional story written by Alice Walker. Walker’smost famous book is The Color Purple which won her the Pulitzer Prize and is also an award winning movie and play. Walker grew up poor in a rural area. When she was young she was shot in the eye by a BB gun and was blinded. Her injury promoted a self-imposed isolation where she first began to create poetry. In high school doctors were able to remove scar tissue from her eye and restore her sight. She received a full scholarship to attend college and studied English and Literature. There are several themes that are within both “Mother Tongue” and “Everyday Use”. While language, family, and education are themes that are present in both pieces, there are some differences in how they are used with in them. In “Mother Tongue” the theme of language is used throughout. Early within the article Tan describes what she thinks about language. She says, “I spend a great deal of my time thinking about the power of language-the way it can evoke emotion, a visual image, a complex idea, or a simple truth.” (Tan 257) She calls language a “tool” that she uses in different ways. There is more than one way that she speaks depending on who she is speaking with. She describes a time where she was talking to a group of people about her life and her book The Joy Luck Club where she felt like the way she was speaking was wrong because her mother was in
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