Mother Tongue and When I was PR –Wendbenedo

Part 1

One significant quote from Amy Tan’s “Mother Tongue” is: “I am a writer. And by that definition, I am someone who has always loved language.” This quote is significant because it sets the tone for the essay and establishes Tan’s credibility as a writer. Tan uses this quote to differentiate herself from a scholar of English or literature and instead, claims that her expertise is derived from her love of language. This statement gives the reader a glimpse into Tan’s passion for language and foreshadows her exploration of the relationship between language and identity. It also tells us that Tan sees language not just as a means of communication but as an art form that can evoke emotions, convey ideas, and shape how we view the world. Tan’s love of language is apparent throughout the essay, and this quote shows that she is a writer who cares deeply about the power of language.


  1. Variations (Noun) – different forms or versions of something
  2. Burdened (Adjective) – heavily loaded or weighed down
  3. Intimacy (Noun) – closeness, familiarity, or a feeling of emotional connection

Parte 2

One significant quote from the “When I Was Puerto Rican” is, “I don’t care what their rules say…I can do the work. I’m not stupid” (Santiago 103). This quote illustrates how the protagonist, a young girl named Esmeralda, is not afraid to speak up for herself and assert her capabilities. Despite being told that she would have to go back to seventh grade due to her limited English proficiency, Esmeralda insists that she is capable of doing eighth-grade work. This quote is important because it shows the reader that Esmeralda is determined and confident in her abilities, despite the challenges she faces. It also demonstrates the importance of education to her and how she is willing to fight for it.


  1. Loomed (verb): appeared in a threatening way; (in the passage) “The first day of school Mami walked me to a stone building that loomed over Graham Avenue”
  2. Clutched (verb): held tightly; (in the passage) “I clutched my eighth-grade report card filled with A’s and B’s”
  3. Mouthiness (noun): talkativeness; (in the passage) “This was probably the first rebellious act she had seen from me outside my usual mouthiness within the family.

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