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In “Aria: Memoir of a Bilingual Childhood,” by Richard
Rodriguez. Using his memoir, Rodriguez challenges the idea of bilingual
education and believes that bilingual education is something that hinders
rather than helps young people that speak a language other than English. One
defining moment was the day at school he raised his hand to volunteer an answer
in front of the entire class, it took him lots of courage, saying “I spoke
out in a loud voice”. Right from that day, everything changed – Rodriguez
seemed moved very far from the disadvantaged child he was a few days earlier.
Rodriguez started feeling like he fits into public society. He fought through
his childhood to understand English and got overwhelmed with it while
forfeiting his happy noisy home life full of Spanish sounds. Rodriguez took
Spanish as a private language, used at home in the comforting presence of his
family and he often felt a sense of safety speaking it. After being forced to
understand English by his Teachers and his Parents, he took English as his
public language, used in the classroom at school and outside his home. Growing
up, Rodriguez’s public language becomes more fluent, unable to speak Spanish
but still able to understand it. He started becoming a regular kid in his
English-speaking society but unfortunately, his connection to his family bonded
by his private language started destabilizing. His parents could not speak good
English, the sense of communication within the family got totally diminished –
as a reader I think he seems okay with that, Rodriguez stated “… one suffers a
diminished sense of private individuality by becoming assimilated into public
society, such assimilation makes possible the achievement of public
individuality” because he was picturing the bigger picture (the pros). As an
Adult, Rodriguez figured his awkward childhood that does not prove the
necessity of bilingual education started to end the day he raised his hand in
class and spoke loudly to an entire class.

Rodriguez’s memoir pretty much supports his primary point,
he believed and proved that the avoidance of learning English is not only
detrimental to a person’s education but for their identity; living a life of
two languages leads to insecure identity. Basically, Rodriguez’s memoir and
essay discuss the pros and cons of bilingual and monolingual education
technique.  

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