10 September 2018
The topic of ethnic heritage is discussed as the author is responding to an acquaintance
asking her what her ethnic background is. Ehrenreich finds her purpose for writing her essay in
making readers aware that no ethnic background is in fact a background. She takes on viewpoint
of herself as most people pride themselves in where they came from and the traditions of their
culture, rather than feeling embarrassed to claim their background. Ehrenreich claims that she
has no ethnic background, disregarding her Scottish, English, and Irish heritage.
Finding your own heritage is an important matter for some people. These roots are
usually related to the idea of carrying a legacy from the family and passing it forward to the next
generation. The author, Barbara Ehrenreich, explores the idea of pursuing this legacy questioning
herself the reasons why it would be relevant and always trying to make references to the way her
parents raised her and the way she raised her children.
Ehrenreich concluded to feel a sense of pride knowing that “the race of ‘none’ marches
on.” The author wrote her article including multiple references to certain traditions that different
cultures practice. Readers assumed to have some general knowledge of different cultures, but
nothing to large. Ehrenreich is describing her realization of heritage to her audience hoping that
the readers can either relate in some way or share some of the excitement that she does in her
own ethnicity, or lack of. Ehrenreich was able to make her point that she does in fact have an
ethnicity other than Scottish, English and Irish. It was interesting to see the progression in the
essay from the authors feeling of disconnect with her heritage to a sense of pride in her family
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that avoid from carrying on cultural activities. She recognizes where she came from and
concludes that no tradition is a tradition.