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Refelctive Baldwin Essay

857 words - 4 pages

Sarah Travis
ENGWR 101
Inst. Kronzer
13 Sept 2014
Reflective Essay
Language has fatal consequences, from my own personal experience, when working in healthcare, speaking unprofessionally can cause me to be terminated, although it may be challenging to change the way you speak a language, you just have to deal with what the employer wants from you or you will lose your job. According to James Baldwin, language “is the most vivid and crucial key to identity: It reveals the private identity, and connects one with, or divorces one from, the larger, public, or communal identity. There have been, and are, times and places, when to speak a certain language could be dangerous, even fatal” ...view middle of the document...

Tan observes the different types of “Englishes” she uses in her life. Tan became aware that she was using a different type of “English” with her mother and husband than with others. She said to her mother, “Not waste money that way” (Tan, 315). This English she uses with her mother and her husband had become their “language of intimacy” (315). After reading works from Baldwin and Tan, I have a new perspective on the role of language and how powerful the use of language really is. I am now aware of the different types of language I use in my everyday life. I use my professional language at work, my professional but also relaxed language at school, and my relaxed language at home. We all change the way we speak a language based off the time and place and who we are speaking to.
    Does language really have fatal consequences? James Baldwin elucidates that language can be dangerous, even fatal. Language does, however; have consequences, and language has the potential to be dangerous, even fatal. In my personal experience as a healthcare professional, I have experienced how fatal language can really be. I am expected to act the role, once my uniform is put on. I am taught to speak a certain terminology; I am told what I can and cannot say to our patients. If I do not follow the policies of my work place then I will have to face the consequences. The consequences are being terminated, bad reputation, loss of money...

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