Richard Rodriguez 's The Achievement Of Desire Essay

1460 Words 6 Pages
Richard Rodriguez’s “The Achievement of Desire” is a retrospective style essay, where he explains the extraordinary educational experiences he endures and the cultural conflicts he undergoes. Richard tackles a psychological battle that makes him choose between education and family: growing up with poorly educated, immigrant parents, who had to make many sacrifices to achieve their greatly improved, yet relatively low economic status, which they are very happy with; while at the same time being surrounded by peers in his school, with the American mentality of improving from generation to generation. Richard’s ambition to learn, and to be like his teachers, separated him from his cultural background. Almost immediately, at a very young age, Richard realized that learning was a very important aspect in his life, and that said aspect required a large amount of silence and alone time, which he could not have at home. Moreover, as much as Rodriguez loved his family, he felt embarrassed by their thick accents and behavior. In a way, I think Rodriguez felt ashamed because most of his goals included everything that his parents lacked, which for them, was already too late to achieve.
The term “scholarship boy”, as Rodriguez explains it, describes a hybrid student that must be fully capable of learning in the American classroom, as well as at home. The scholarship boy must choose between the classroom and his cultural background in order to progress and, hypothetically, have a…

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