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"The Joy Luck Club" By Amy Tan: Mother And Daughter Relationships.

1176 words - 5 pages

The love between mothers and daughters is a sacred sort of love that will never become surpassed on the same type of intimate level. Cardinal Mermillod, Swiss Catholic Priest of mid 1800's said, "A mother's love can take the place of all others but whose place no one else can take." This quote has precise relevancy to the key theme of: Barriers existing between generations, in Amy Tan's captivating novel, The Joy Luck Club. As a litterateur, Ms. Tan evokes further realization that a mother's love is an unsurpassing and eternal sentiment; through this the mothers improve their relationships with their daughters.Firstly, the story An-Mei Hsu demonstrates that even the tinniest of motherly/daughterly acts can greatly alter perception. At a very young age, little An-Mei has been taught to deny her mother the slightest bit of kindest, and shows great hostility towards her. The young child lives with a grandmother, Popo. The elderly woman eventually becomes very ill, and one morning An-Mei's mother return's to Popo's deathbed. The young woman gives an offering to her dying mother; this one act of sacrifice and forgiveness impacts An-Mei forever. For the first time she understands the power of a mother/daughter relationship. When An-Mei grows old, and has a daughter of her own, the reader realizes that them too have tensions in their relationship. Rose Hsu, An-Mei's daughter, feels opposed to her mother, and in essence afraid of her. It is only when Rose receives support and encouragement from her mother that their relationship begins the strain in their relationship disintegrates. As an outcome of reduced tensions, Rose begins to feel closer to her mother, she realizes that An-Mei loves her unconditionally. An-Mei, who is inarguably a strong woman, learned at a young age the value of maternal love. Through out the story, she offers guidance, yet at the same time gives her space to shape as a individual, a prospect the other three daughters in the novel would have embellished upon, but inevitably Rose is not as much of an individual as the others, "My mother once told me why I was so confused all the time. She said I was born without wood so that I listened to too many people. She knew this because once she had almost become this way." In this quote, Tan uses Old Chinese Symbolism to explain how a lack of inner strength equates to a inadequate supply of wood in a person, making them "crooked and weak" . Eventually, as Rose reaches a central imperative period in her life where she bares some crucial decisions, and looks for support and guidance from her mother. Although An-Mei would be pleased to make the proper choices for her daughter, she is aware that Rose needs to triumph this obstacle on her own, and offers an exact amount of support, the young woman needs so find her inner might. An-Mei has shown she wants the best for her daughter; she wants Rose to be strong.Secondly, the story of Lindo and Waverly Jong is of two strong individual women...

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