Asian American Literature Essay Research Paper It — страница 2

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normally be looked down upon in Asian culture, but she was encouraged. She was even given lessons in chess, and she was a national champion. Unlike An-mei’s mother, Waverly was bringing honor to the family name. When Waverly is encouraged to excel in chess she learns something from her mother. Her mother said in her broken English, “This American rules?Every time people come out from a foreign country, must know rules. You not know, judge say, Too bad, go back. They not telling you why so you can use their way to go forward. They say, Don’t know why, you find out yourself.” This is an American custom, more than an Asian one. She is explaining that in order to succeed as an Asian female in the United States, then there are certain things that you will have to find out on

your own. Also in this chapter was the theme/characteristic of inner strength. Waverly says she six when her mother taught her the “art of invisible strength.” Waverly was walking by the candy store when she was a young child, and she was begging her mother to take her inside. Her mother refused to take her inside, which angered Waverly. Then her mother went on to explain, “Wise guy, he not go against wind. In Chinese we say, Come from South blow with wind-poom!-North will follow. Strongest wind cannot be seen.” This means that the strongest way to win an argument is to keep to yourself, which Waverly used in her chess matches. Waverly goes on to say, “A little knowledge withheld is a great advantage one should store for future use.” Another example of invisible

strength, inner strength, is the “The Moon Lady.” Ying-ying’s mother was telling her how a woman should act when she said, “A boy can run and chase dragonflies?But a girl should stand still.” The girl would have a better chance catching the dragonfly than the boy, she would catch the dragonfly with inner strength, rather than muscle like the boy. The chapter, “The Moon Lady,” has another characteristic of what it is to be female, which is the good of the whole is more important than the good of the individual. They were all on their way to see the Moon Lady, and if you see the Moon Lady, you receive one wish from her. Ying-ying asked what a “secret wish” was, and the answer was that is was on that you cannot ask. Ying-ying was young as this point, so she asked

why. Amah’s response to Ying-ying was, “This is because?because if you ask it?it is no longer a wish but a selfish desire?Haven’t I taught you-that it is wrong to think of our own needs? A girl can never ask, only listen.” Here she is telling that by making a wish for herself she is being selfish and forgetting that she is not the important one, but the good of the whole is the important one. Amah is also hinting at obedience when she tells her daughter that she is not to ask questions, but just listen to the men and go along with it. Arranged marriages are a very tough thing to go through. Marrying someone because one has to has to be hard because one is not marrying out of love. This is exactly the case in “Waiting for Mr. Kim.” Gracie two twin sisters have already

run away from to and eloped with two men. Their marriages were not arranged because they left before their father could arrange them. Now, with her sisters gone, Gracie is the only remaining daughter, and she is somewhat frowned upon because she was the “third daughter.” She did not really like the two men that her father was thinking of arranging the marriage with, but it did not matter. It did not matter because as her mother told her, “Girls don’t choose.” The girls just sit there and look pretty while their fathers choose for them, they have to comply with their father’s decision. They are obedient, and at the same time respectful of the decision that is made. Another characteristic that appears in this story is that women made to think that they are second class

compared to men. When her Mr. Kang, Gracie’s father, would walk, he would sometimes reach back to hold Mrs. Kang’s hand, but she would pull away. Not only would she pull away, but she would “stay behind as she cleaned her purse or took forever with her coat, just to have it the way she had learned it, her husband a few places ahead, women behind.” Her mother not only believes that this is how women should act and it is a part of their femininity, but she is passing this way of thinking onto her daughter. Her mother is relaying the message to her daughter that no matter what you need to show your husband respect and let him know that he is in charge. Both of these stories have displayed that there are certain characteristics of females and they are inner strength, the good