“The Rules of the Game” by Amy Tan is about Waverly Jong mother taught her the art of invisible strength when she was six years old, saying that it is a strategy for winning arguments and respect. At Christmas Waverly and her brothers received gifts from donations of members from another church. Waverly convinced her brothers, Winston and Vincent, to let her play chess by offering two of her life savers to stand in for the missing pieces. Waverly began playing with Lau Po, an old man who played chess in the park. He taught her many new strategies. Waverly began to attract attention because of her young age, and she became a celebrity within the Chinatown community. Waverly's mother would force her to go to the market with her, presenting her in all the shops. One day exasperated Waverly yelled at her mother on the street, telling her that she was embarrassed by her constant bragging.
The theme for “The Rules of the Game” is the dynamics relationship between mother and daughter. The first citing from this story states about the dynamics relationships between mother and daughter is at the beginning of the story when Waverly was pulling her mother leg telling her that some boy from her class said that Chinese torture people. Then her mother got angry and told Waverly that they do everything and the best is torturing people.
"One day, as she struggled to weave a hard-toothed comb through my disobedient hair, I had a sly thought. I asked her,"ma, what is chinese torture?" My mother shook her head.... "Who say this word?" she asked without a trace of knowing how wicked I was being. I shrugged my shoulders and said, "Some boy in my class said Chinese people do Chinese torture." "Chinese people do many things,"she said simply. "Chinese people do business, do medicine, do painting. Not lazy like American people. We do torture. Best torture"(Tan 33).
This quote shows that Waverly is trying to have a little fun with her mother but she took everything serious.
The next example of dynamics relationship between mother and daughter is almost at the end of the story when Waverly's mother forces her to the market on Saturday so she can constantly brag that Waverly is her daughter. This really embarrassed Waverly. She got so angry at her mother and told her that she wished that she would stop telling everyone Waverly is her daughter. Then she and her mother got into an argument, and Waverly ran away from her mother.
“My mother would proudly walk with me, visiting many shops, buying very little. “ This my daughter Waverly Jong,” she said to whoever looked her way. One day after we left a shop I said under my breath, “ I wish you wouldn’t do that , telling everybody I’m your daughter.” My mother stopped walking..... “Aiii-ya. So shame be with mother?” She grasped my hand even tighter as she glared at me. I looked down. “It’s not that, just so obvious. It’s so embarrassing.”... If you want to show off, then why don’t you learn to play...