Listen To Your Mother--Joy Luck Club

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade July 2001

download word file, 4 pages 0.0

Downloaded 8 times

No child realizes in youth the unconditional love and feeling of obligation to protect their children that a mother has. As children, and even into adulthood, we tend to fight the lessons our mothers try to teach us and the advice they try to give us w ithout giving any consideration as to what life experiences of theirs may have prompted this advice. Generally we view their attempt to give advice as an intrusion into our lives and our privacy. Occasionally though, we can step back for a moment and see all the good intentions behind our mother's actions. In The Joy Luck Club, author Amy Tan tries to get the reader to take this step back. Through her use of flashbacks and the development of strong-willed characters she brings into perspective how after experiencing her own devastating tragedies, a mother will go to great lengths to teach her children the values that will protect them from their own devastating life tragedies.

In the stories told by Jing-Mei, Tan weaves in flashbacks and memories of Jing-Mei's own childhood experiences, including stories she has heard of her mother Suyuan's early life in China. These stories help to explain why she teaches her daughter the v alues of optimism and determination. As the reader encounters these flashbacks, Suyuan's tragic history is revealed. When the war reaches her town, Suyuan loses everything she owns, and in an attempt to save her own life by fleeing from China she is force d to leave her two twin babies behind on the side of the road in hopes they might have a chance at a good life. Jing-Mei recalls that her mother "had come here in 1949 after losing everything in China... but she never looked back with regret. There w ere so many...