Themes in the Joy Luck Club

Published: 2021-06-29 06:53:57
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Category: Biographies

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The barriers between Chinese and American cultures in the Joy Luck Club
Justin Szaday, May 18th, 2011, NaCa, Honors English 10B, Unit 4, Portfolio
In our lives we come across problems between American culture and other cultures, in the case of the Joy Luck Club, it's the mixture of American and Chinese culture that creates trouble. Lindo Jong says, "I wanted my children to have the best combination: American circumstances and Chinese character. How could I know these two things do not mix?" (254). In the Joy Luck Club, a couple of characters have come across these problems, but, I will be focusing on Waverly Jong. What are the barriers between Chinese and American cultures and what conflicts do they result in for Waverly Jong?
Waverly Jong didn't follow the Chinese ways her mother tried to teach her. She has a strong personally that at first, her mother didn't accept. Waverly wanted to be American, to not have any trace of her Chinese heritage in her. This caused a real communication problem between her mother, Lindo Jong, and herself. Waverly often hated her mother's strange customs and ways of life. She never cared for her Chinese heritage, ignoring what her mothers had to say and only then realizing the reasons why her mother acted the way she did when they truly listened to the story of her life. Waverly also often found herself ashamed of her mother, like how they don't have the perfect English, how she bragged about her or that when they try to tell them a story or act certain ways they don't understand. Although, the real conflicts between Chinese and American cultures occur with Waverly's white boyfriend, named Rich, as a factor.

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