Gilyard vs Rodriguez: How to Achieve High Academic Literacy

Topics: Literacy, Language, Second language acquisition Pages: 4 (1567 words) Published: November 6, 2013
Gilyard vs Rodriguez: How to Achieve High Academic Literacy
Higher levels of literacy can be achieved in many ways. Two factors which play a role in acquiring these levels are the attachments of students to their previous cultures and their previous languages, more specifically the dialect, that they speak. These factors tend to change one’s personal identity and play a huge role in how one reaches higher literacy levels. In our two readings, Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez and Voices of the Self: A Study of Language Competence, we see Richard Rodriguez and Keith Gilyard respectively go through these changes at home and in their school settings. Gilyard has a point of view which geared more towards incorporating one’s culture into his academic life is the proper way to go out to attain higher literacy levels. On the other hand, Rodriguez has a view saying that one must to completely rid oneself of his culture background in order to succeed and receive higher literacy rates. One can prove from their writings that in order to achieve higher literacy rates and succeed in doing so Rodiriguez’s view of ridding oneself of his culture is the best way in order to attain these levels.

Rodriguez and Gilyard, both being from minority families and settings, both needed to change their identities in their school settings to increase their academic levels. As Seo brings down in his work Crossing the boarders by Walking around, “The United States of the 21st century is possibly the most culturally and racially diverse country of any nation in history” (Seo 54). This is due to the increasing amount of immigrants coming into the United States over the past century and motivation to do well with the American dream. These changes were triggered and influenced in many different ways. Rodriguez saw how his older siblings were doing at school and looked up to them realizing that he needed to change in order to become more like them. We see this when...
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