Richard Rodriguez demonstrates in his essay “The Achievement of Desire”, how he himself is “the scholarship boy”. He believes that he is the scholar that Richard Hoggart refers to in his book “The Uses of Literacy.” Hoggart’s literature consociates to the issues of how there is a lack of scholarship students and how they inscribe their time to reading. Rodriguez can relate to Hoggart’s interpretation of the “scholarship boy” because he spent a large portion of his life dedicated to reading a conglomeration of literature.
Rodriguez wrote about how he wants to become more like his teachers. “But Hoggart’s calm prose only makes me recall the urgency with which I came to idolize my grammar school teachers.” (Rodriguez, p. 656) To Rodriguez he saw his teachers as role models and admired them for their intelligence. Rodriguez would not acknowledge his parents as being much of a success in his life. “I was not proud of my mother and father. I was embarrassed by their lack of education.” (Rodriguez, p. 658) Rodriguez felt that his parents were lacking the academic intelligence and since he achieved many awards for his success, it was a burden to see that his parents did not accomplish the same.
It was Rodriguez that achieved awards and medals for his academics. His teachers would praise him by saying “Your parents must be very proud of you.” (Rodriguez’s teachers, p. 658) Rodriguez knew that one of his parents (his mother) was proud of him, while the other (his father) could careless about his achievements. His father was the person in his life that tended to mock him for his passion of reading. Rodriguez’s father never succeeded in his dream to have a career in engineering. In my opinion I think that Rodriguez’s father was jealous of him because his son was able to have goals and accomplish them.
To Rodriguez reading was a form of habit he decided to implement in his life. He would read not only to escape from his everyday life, but also to prove it to himself that he can be “the scholarship boy”.