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Chrystal Slowley

February 5, 2014

“America and I” Q&A.

  1. Ania Yezierska’s initial impression of America was that it “was a land of living hope” which, compared to her life in Russia, was a breath of fresh air. Russia to her was dead and had her entrapped, much like how a prison cell would. She felt that America gave her possibilities and the opportunity to live a bright liberating life.
  2. While in America,  Yezierska desires to express herself, mostly through creativity and giving. In order to do that, she wants to get a job to cover the expenses of her dream.
  3. I believe that Yezierska’s “Americanized” family treated her harshly because, just like her, they came from Russia and knew the hardship of being an immigrant, and trying to make it in America. They could have helped prepare her for life as an American and pay her; giving her wages and instructing her on how to save would have helped her greatly, but they treated her like a slave.
  4. The best part of Yezierska’s second job was she had that personal time to herself in the evenings. Yet, she lost it because she disliked how her boss kept trying to have her work overtime with low wages and indecent living conditions. That in itself took away from her personal time.
  5. Yezierska enjoys expressing herself but she hasn’t been able to on America because of the language barrier. If she decides to put her feelings in writing no one but her people would be able to understand her, and more than anything, she desires for America to understand and accept her.
  6. As an American citizen, born and raised, I know the luxury of having free shelter and provision, and it would make sense for immigrants to have that same luxury. I also know that when I become of age and ability, I’ll have to care for myself; immigrants should also be made aware that America isn’t just luxury and dreams, it’s a hard work atmosphere, and supporting dreams costs twice that work.
  7. Yezierska has similarities and differences with the Pilgrims: she knows what it is to leave her homeland and arrive at a land of possibilities, but she expected that certain things would be handed to her which wasn’t the case. The pilgrims never asked for any handouts, but left their print on America, and she now aspires to do the same.

they treated her like a slave.

9. The best part of Yezierska’s second job was she had that personal time to herself in the evenings and Sundays. She lost her job because she disliked how her boss kept trying to have her work overtime with low wages and indecent living conditions. That in itself took away from her personal time.

10. Yezierska enjoys expressing herself, but she hasn’t been able to in America due to the language barrier. If she decided to put her feelings in writing, no one would be able to understand her, and more than anything, she desires for America to understand and accept her.

11. As an American citizen, born and raised, I know the luxury of having free shelter and provision, and it would make sense for new immigrants to experience that same luxury. But I also know that when I become of age and ability, I’ll have to care for myself; immigrants should also be made aware that America isn’t just luxury and dreams, it’s a hard work atmosphere, and supporting dreams costs twice that work.

12. Yezierska has similarities and difference with the Pilgrims: she knows what it is to leave her homeland and arrive at a land of possibilities, but she expected that certain things would be handed to her which wasn’t the case. The Pilgrims never asked for handouts, but they left their print on America, and she now aspires to do the same.

13. Yezierska utilizes the words “hunger” and “appetite” to first, distinguish her wants and her needs, and to convey the severity of what it is she is in need of. To her, the need to express herself was as if her heart was hungry for it; it had not been satisfied while she had begun her work in America and each day the hunger grew deeper and deeper until she found a way to satisfy her hunger.

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