For example, there was a study about how lizards that adopted the same hues as their environment survived against their predatory species, whereas lizards of vivid colors were ultimately, depleted from their environment. This process is more commonly known as natural selection. However, one might wonder if the same theory applies to social situations, or if it is rather, a naturalistic fallacy. Which is to say, is this theory actually justified?
This is what I will be examining in reference to David Seeders’ essay, “Me Talk Pretty One Day,” through connections of my own personal experiences. In “Me Talk Pretty One Day,” Seeders describes his experience learning French in Paris at the age of forty-one under the rule of his tyrannical professor. Though it was his first time seriously studying French, his professor certainly does not cease to point out his amateurism. Like Seeders, have experienced similar situations, in that I have been tossed into foreign environments to learn new languages under unforgiving circumstances.
I loud like to think that was born and raised in Taiwan, but in all actuality, I was only born there. Shortly after I was born, my mother decided that it was in our best interest to move to America with my father, of Danish heritage, who was at the time, taking leave from the US. National Guard to study both modern and ancient Asian politics, culture and linguistics. He studied in Taiwan for about ten years, and before that, he had studied in Hong Kong, China, Korea, and Japan.
Incidentally, my mother grew up in the countryside of Taiwan and ran away to the city at the age of fifteen to start her own life ND escape the rural atmosphere. Fate brought them together later on in their lives, when both of their careers were just blossoming. Of course, my father’s return to America was inevitable, as he was still in the military, and my mother decided that it was important for a child to grow up having a father, so we moved there with him. Growing up with this multicultural lifestyle felt surreal, to say the least.
Many aspects of my mind were affected in the way that I thought, spoke, and in the way that I thought about how other people spoke. To put it simply, I thought ND spoke in a different language than most people in the environments I found myself in. My fathers side of the family spoke English and Danish, but my father himself, is an incredible polyglot. Am not aware of how many languages he speaks exactly, butt know he is fluent in English, Danish, French, Japanese, Korean, Russian, and a couple dialects of Chinese, as well as a few Middle Eastern languages. So with him, would speak some of those languages.
My mother and her side of the family speak a few dialects of Chinese, Taiwanese, Japanese, as well as their local, aboriginal languages. So, I peak some of those languages with her. The usual median language for my family is the Mandarin dialect of Chinese, since we all speak it-?though during every family reunion, it seems as if everyone is purposely speaking a language or dialect that do not understand. I would filter through gobbled-kook to the bits and pieces of information that did catch. Like Seeders, I was “not completely in the dark, yet understood only half” (Seeders, 555).
I would maintain a blank composure as others would flash me patronizing smirks whilst speaking with snake-like tones, then wait for them to approach me with he usual, all too casual compliment of me being an adorable mix-blood child, when really, they meant that I was adorably oblivious. To my misfortune, I was soon to discover that I was only to receive the same kind of condescension from my father’s side of the family, and though nobody would scarce say it, it was clear to me that I was deemed an unworthy, disgraceful subhuman.
When I finally did move to America, I had not yet learnt how to speak English, and so, using this to his advantage, my father treated me as his precious little social experiment. For his own scholarly advancement, was lolled into believing that he spoke nothing but Chinese. I was then placed in an English-speaking school with absolutely no knowledge of how to speak English. When teachers would inquire about why I never spoke, my parents would curtly reply, “She’s just shy. My parents would also take me to grocery stores and force me to ask the employees in English, where to find specific grocery items, and then translate it back to Mandarin for my parents. It went on like this for years until my father had to appear at a parent-teacher conference. Of course, my natural instinct was to translate, but my teacher UT me off, saying “Honey, you don’t have to translate, your dad speaks English,” to which I responded, “No he doesn’t, he’s Chinese. In retrospect, wonder how it is that I could have completely dismissed my father’s physical quality of race and focus completely on his mental qualities of thought and communication, when so many people around me saw only the superficial. So I learnt, as Seeders did, that “Understanding doesn’t mean that you can suddenly speak the language. Far from it. It’s a small step, nothing more, yet its rewards are intoxicating and deceptive” (Seeders, 558), ND what I think he meant was that aside from what we, as a species, can perceive of existing emotional connections, there are barriers which disrupt and corrupt these emotional connections.
One of those barriers is the idea that one life is worthier than another life, just because the first perceives life in a way, which he thinks is superior to the second; that is the fallacy.