Analyzing the Text
In the first three p>
His use of irony highlights the dichotomy of how many people think of immigrants. While many people romanticize The Immigrant as a quintessential American bedrock, many people are uncomfortable with immigrants in real life. Many people like the notion of America being founded by immigrants. However, they only like immigrants in the abstract, not when the encounter them in their daily life.
The author means that the conversation is stale and rather boring. By confining the conversation to the issue of black or white, we miss the reality of the variety of affinities that join and separate us.
Rodriguez calls himself and impure-American because he is a mestizo–a mixture of more than one race and identity. He is neither one thing or the other, neither black or white. His background information is persuasive beause he is a living embodiment of the mixtures and combinations that make up each of our American identities.
His word choice here is significant because it highlights that the term “Hispanic” is an artificial contrivance used by one group to label another. Rodriguez’ language choices also make the point that by being labeled by the Nixon administration, various ethnic groups with some shared cultural characteristics were lumped together as a single “race.” The word choices by Rodriguez call attention to irritated tone that encompasses his description of much of the way that Americans define each other.
The author explains that there are white, Asian, and black hispanics, so the comparison is actually of race (Black) to an entire cultural group (Hispanic) made up of various races.
Rodriguez points out that America citizens are an aging population, while the immigrants are younger and having more children. This is important because it shows the inevitability of change and continued mixing of races and cultures in America and the immigrant population grows.
The anecdotes serve to highlight the reality of so many cultures meeting and influencing each other in the United States. In fact, this is often occurring without us even noticing. Each individual anecdote reinforces the position that culture, as well as race, are fluid.
By this statement Rodriguez shows that he feels himself formed and strongly influenced by the people around him. Of course, he was not born as a Chinese person, but he an adopt that identity from being introduced and influenced by the culture. This supports his central claim that a discussion or labels limited to black or white fail to capture and reflect the reality of each of our own experiences of mestizaje.