Cultural Differences And Conflicts In Who's Irish By Gish Irish

1684 Words 7 Pages
Have you ever heard the racial joke that begins with “An American, a Chinese and a Hispanic man are in a plane?” Or how about the one that takes place with different religious leaders meeting in a casual bar? If you live in the United States, especially California I would assume you would have heard these jokes or similar ones. Although they are extremely offensive, they help show how culturally diverse our country is. Being culturally diverse, many people of different religions and backgrounds are exposed to new ones that they are not so used to or even dislike. Beliefs and ideologies of complete opposite are all mixed in “under one roof” and when this happens, conflicts can occur. This clash of cultures is clearly seen in Gish Jen’s short story, “Who’s Irish.” In the story, the cultural conflicts between the traditional Chinese lifestyle and the more modern “Western” lifestyle are brought up and are dominant in the text. To be specific, the cultural clash between the grandmother in the story, who is an older, more traditional Chinese woman, and her daughter who married an Irish man and has a child who grew up in a more western society. The cultural clashing, the differences and the disagreements …show more content…
The traditional Chinese child grows to be obedient, silent and cold. If its parent tells it to do something, obedience is expected. It can be inferred that if Sophie would have matured in the way the grandmother would have wanted, she would have been seen as a flower. However, since the daughter grew up disobedient and energetic, as many American children do, the grandmother isn’t happy and states that the granddaughter is a weed. Through the imagery, the grandmother implies that the daughter was not raised correctly, that she was raised as an American child and not as a Chinese

Related Documents