Identity Is Shaped by Many Factors; Hoa Pham's Interview and Section of a Call to Arms

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Identity is shaped by many factors. Explore how this idea is depicted in two of the texts?

One’s identity is indescribable and unique as it is shaped by many factors. Identity is perceived to be undefinable and can be altered throughout an individual’s life. In Hoa Pham’s Interview and Michelle Law’s novel A Call to Arms, identity can be shaped by cultural contexts and may emerge through interactions with others. Both texts effectively convey identity to be dynamic through the use of various techniques and cultural references.

In Hoa Pham’s interview, identity can be understood through cultural contexts and through various interactions with others. As shown in the interview, Pham’s perception of her identity is shown through her culture and the obstacles faced, which is conveyed through the slang, “Chink”. Here, it effectively influences Pham’s identity based on her physical appearance and cultural background. Pham’s insecurity is caused by her “Vietnamese-Australian” identity, confusing Pham’s understanding of her true identity. Pham’s identity is not established properly due to the relationships with those around her. This is conveyed through her despairing tone in the line, “I was raped by an uncle…pressure to save face”. Here, Pham is demonstrating how this traumatising event has affected her personally, thus influencing her identity. Pham’s heightened understanding of her identity is shaped by the embracing of her religious background as a Buddhist. A significant element which affects her, thus enabling her to learn and understand, “Source of strength”. Here, the use of sibilance embraces the positive effects of following Buddhism. Therefore, this text reinforces the concept that identity is indeed influenced by many factors, such as one’s cultural context and relationships.

Similarly, Michelle Law’s novel A Call to Arms demonstrates that one’s identity can be constructed through cultural forces and relationship with other individuals. Law reveals...
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