Me Talk Pretty One Day Questions and Answers
by David Sedaris

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What is the author's claim in Me Talk Pretty One Day?

The author, David Sedaris, claims that language is the key to social acceptance. By examining issues such as the social effect of a lisp, the effects of using swear words, and the challenges of trying to communicate effectively in a new language, Sedaris sheds light on the link between language and social acceptance. Individual stories may have their own claims, also related to language.

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Humor writer David Sedaris’s claim in the story titled “Me Talk Pretty One Day” is that the joy of grasping a foreign language outweighs the negativity of insults while struggling to learn it. At the end of this piece, after the daily ridicule of David and his classmates, the imperious French language teacher tells him,

Every day spent with you is like having a cesarean section.” And it struck me that, for the first time since arriving in France, I could understand every word that someone was saying.

Sedaris suddenly realizes that he comprehends exactly what she is saying, as disparaging as her words are. His understanding of the French language comes after weeks or months of embarrassing fits and starts in class. On the first day of class, the teacher systematically ridicules each student, like the two Polish Annas who

surely had clear notions of what they loved and hated, but like the rest of us, they were limited in terms of vocabulary, and this made them appear less than...

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