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Junot Diaz Drown Research Paper

In: Novels

Submitted By AtraentousC
Words 1680
Pages 7
English 150
18 December 2014 Unconsciously, we all speak different languages; we categorize the way we speak by the environment and people at which we are speaking too. Whenever a character enters an unfamiliar environment, they experiment with language to find themselves and understand reality. For immigrants, language is a means to retain one’s identity; however, as they become more assimilated in their new communities their language no longer reflects that of their identity but of their new cultural surroundings. When an immigrant, immigrates to a new country they become marginalized, they’re alienated from common cultural practices, social ritual, and scripted behavior. It’s not without intercultural communication and negotiation do immigrants conform to new surroundings. In “Drown,” the title story of his narrative collection, Junot Diaz enumerates the story of a Hispanic youth growing up in New Jersey. Though Diaz explores issues of queerness, shamelessness, and familial relations within this selection, it is his use of language that proves most intriguing. Rather than simply describing the struggles of adapting to a new language or customs, Diaz portrays how, at an early age, he manipulated language as a tool to makes sense of his new hybrid identity. The use of language in Junot Diaz’s Drown is spare and unadorned, often rendered in "Spanglish," an unpredictable mixture of both English and Spanish. Diaz uses Spanish words in the midst of standard English sentences to fortify the differences between Dominican and American cultures. Although, the integration of street slang with Spanish may confound the typical reader, it accurately depicts the taxing experience of new immigrants struggling to make sense of new phenomena in the United States and engages the harsh reality of the multilingualism. The difference in language between the Dominican and…...

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