Family influences how people think and feel about the world around them, because people spend the most time with their family. In “By Any Other Name”, Santha Rau and her sister Premila went to the Anglo Indian day school in Zorinabad. They are exposed to British ways of thinking, which conflicts with the way their family taught them how to think about themselves and the world around them. This causes confusion and apathy in Santha.
When Santha is given her new name Cynthia, she gets confused about who she is because her family already gave her a name. The teacher asks Santha to introduce her-self by saying her name in front of the class, she simply says “I don’t know” (Rau 36) and takes a seat.
Since Santha was already taught by her mother the basics they were learning in class, she wasn’t really paying attention. She writes, “most of that morning I was bored … the lessons were mostly concerned with reading and writing – things my mother had already taught me” (Rau 37).
Santha saw herself as the identity that her family gave her as a kid. When that was changed by the British it caused confusion, because she lost sight of what she thought her identity was. Also her mom already taught her how to read and write, causing her to be bored because she already knew what was being taught.
In “An Indian Father’s Plea”, Robert Lake is defending his son Wind-Wolf from being labeled as a slow learner. Wind-Wolf is not a slow learner but was taught the Cherokee way of viewing the world by his family.
Wind-Wolf was taught differently by his family speaking things verbally. His dad expresses to the teacher that “he may have trouble writing his name on a piece…