Setting And Theme In A Pair Of Tickets By Amy Tan

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The, setting, symbols and theme in “A Pair of Tickets” In Amy Tan’s “A Pair of Tickets”, the author describes the quest of a young American- Chinese woman who is on a mission to fulfill her deceased Mother’s dream of finding the twin daughters she had to abandon as a young woman in war-torn China. Amy Tan skillfully uses the setting, symbols, and the theme to explore the lead character’s feelings about her heritage. The setting of the story is China in the late 1980s. While, the now thirty-six year old, Jing Mei had rejected her Chinese heritage growing up in San Francisco, she realizes how being in China changes her feelings towards her genetic roots and ethnicity. “The minute our train leaves…I feel different.” (Tan 147). Tan uses the …show more content…
Jing Mei’s rejection of her Mother’s traits, while she was growing up, is illustration through the use of colors: yellow and pink. Her mother was “…being colorblind to the fact that lemon yellow and pale pink are not good combinations for winter clothes.” (Tan 147). The author lets this symbol, two colors one would use to dress baby girls, resurface as Jing Mei roams through China, where she observes “…little children wearing pink and yellow…” (Tan 149). Tan uses this symbol again when the protagonist meets an aunt who is described as “An old woman in a yellow knit beret …holding up a pink plastic bag…” (Tan 151). With this recurring symbol, Jing Mei is continually reminded of her Mother who has died. As the memory of her Mother repeatedly emerges, so do her undeniable Chinese roots. Another recurring symbol is the Polaroid camera. As the protagonist’s Father and Aunt get their picture taken “…each of them holding a corner of the picture, watching their images begin to form.” (Tan 151), Jing Mei’s ethnic identity also slowly develops within her. As the Polaroid, the protagonist slowly processes the experiences of the journey until a new picture of herself is revealed. Much like the photograph, she becomes more vivid, the more she accepts her heritage. The meaning of the twins’ names, “Spring Rain” and “Spring Flower”, symbolize the spring of their Mother’s life. This analogy further extends to

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