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The Joy Luck Club Essay

1154 words - 5 pages

Home is not exactly a place but it is an understanding of the beliefs of the mothers in the novel and the different but not wrong beliefs of their daughters. The first relationship that will be discussed is the relationship between An-mei Hsu and her brief relationship with her mother in China. An-Mei first describes her mother as a ghost who later returns to her after she had been gone for nearly five years. After leaving her other family members, An-Mei is taken to a strange, but wealthy house where she discovers her mothers relationship with a man named Wu Tsing. Her mother had disappeared, had a son, and was Wu Tsings fourth wife.After being weakened by the house, and the dishonesty of the people in the house, An-Meis mother commits suicide only after she tells An-Mei that she would rather kill her own weak spirit so she could give me a stronger one (Tan, 240). As a Chinese belief, it is thought that a mother was to pass her spirit to her daughter and so on through each generation to come. Although An-Mei experienced a brief, tragic relationship with her mother, An-Mei's spirit and sense of home was stronger then before and that day her mother died An-Mei learned to shout(240). On the other hand, An-Mei's relationship with herdaughter was not as easy to recognize in the sense of a home place as it was for An-Mei and her mother. An-Mei's daughter Rose was one of seven children. An-Mei put an immense amount of responsibility on Rose at a very young age. Rose was expected to take care of her four brothers in order to learn responsibility and appreciation for her parents. This responsibility leads to the death of the youngest brother, Bing, but a slight understanding of An-Mei's faith in things and not just hopes in things. Rose does not realize her mother's faith and fate speech until she is facing a divorce from her husband Ted and her recollection of her baby brother Bing. An-Mei insists that Rose must keep trying to keep her marriage, This is not hope. Not reason. This is your fate You must think foryourself, what you must do. If someone tells you, then you are not trying (130). Then later Rose admitting that she had been talking to too many people and she must make up her own mind. Although in a roundabout way, Rose finally realizes what her mother had been telling her all along and in the end, Rose is a much stronger person that is unafraid to make her own decisions and to stand up for what she believes in. This is Rose's exploration of a home place that is identified through her mother and now her own strong will.The next pair of relationships to be discussed inrelation to a home place is of Ying-ying St. Clair and herdaughter Lena St. Clair. When Lena is a child, Ying-ying is very overprotective and she barely lets Lena do anything. For example, when they would go to a store, Ying-ying would not let go of Lena's hand. Ying-ying was afraid of losing Lena and having nothing left because Ying-ying was never satisfied so she...

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