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Improving Mother/Daughter Relationships in Amy Tan’s Joy Luck Club Essay

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Improving Mother/Daughter Relationships in Amy Tan’s Joy Luck Club


One day everything is going great, in fact things could not be better and then you say something and your friend turns to you and says “oh my god, you sounded just like your mother”.  That is when you freak out and think to yourself it is true I am turning into my mother.  This is every daughters worst nightmare come true.  When a young girl is growing up her mother always says and does things that the girl vows she will never say and do but she does.  Very rarely do we see cases of women wanted to be like their mother but it usually happens even if they do not want it to.  In the book The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan tells stories of four Chinese immigrant mothers and their relationships with the American born daughters.  In this novel, Tan shows us the struggle these mothers face in teaching their American daughters about their heritage.  Throughout the novel it becomes evident that the daughters feel it is important to learn about their history and develop stronger relationships with their mothers

Throughout the novel the reader is introduced to the characters one by one learning about their past and their present lives.   Each chapter deals with individual stories of relationships between husband and wife, mother and daughter,  and even daughter and daughter.  Every story helps the reader learn how important the mother daughter relationship is in The Joy Luck Club.

First, Suyuan Woo who is actually dead but story is told by her daughter Jing-Mei Woo.  Suyuan Woo started the Joy Luck Club when she came to America so she and other Chinese immigrants could talk about Chinese culture and how to carry on traditions and make living conditions better for her...


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...ws us that for young women to understand themselves they must understand their mothers.  The mother daughter relationship in The Joy Luck Club is illustrated through a learning process especially in Waverly and Jing-Mei’s situations.   Each women has to learn though her mother and her own feelings what it is like to become Chinese because that is basically what this book’s theme is.  Through the novel the women are developing mentally through experience some positive and some negative.  Each women finds herself through her mother and comes to peace with themselves

Work Cited

Tan, Amy. The Joy Luck Club. New York: Random House, 1989.

Sources Consulted

Do, Thuan Thi. Chinese-American Women in American Culture. 1992 http://www.ics.uci.edu/~tdo/ea/chinese.html

Jokinen, Anniina. Anniina's Amy Tan Page. 1996 http://www.luminarium.org/contemporary/amytan/


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