The Joy Luck Club Literary Analysis

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The Joy Luck Club (Two Kinds) Essay

The Joy Luck Club centers on the theme of hope. This is articulated through interactions between mother and daughter, a mother’s hope for a better life for her daughter, and a daughter’s hopes to meet her mother’s expectations. Having dealt with hardships and struggles in the mother’s own life, she becomes so focused on giving her daughter a better life at all cost, but does not see the consequences of her actions. She is blinded 
by the possibilities and opportunities that America holds for her daughter, but her drive creates a gap of unawareness that the daughter’s dreams are not hers. Jing-Mei’s mother’s reason for pushing her daughter to be successful arises from how she wants a better life for her daughter than she had back in China. She had lost 
her mother, father, family house, first husband, and her two twin baby daughters. 
Jing-Mei’s mother had high hopes for her daughter and hoped they would come 
true. Her
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Jing-Mei is fighting to become her own person and follow her own dream, while her mother has her dream for her planned out already. Jing-Mei hopes to be herself and not what her mother expects or hopes. “You want me to be someone that I’m not!” (Tan, 153) This shows her struggle to become her own person. And to become her own person she needs to assert herself to her mother and crush her mother’s dream in doing so. Jing- Mei’s mother tries to control her only because she knows how harsh the world is and she must direct her to a path she thinks is good for Jing-Mei. “Only two kinds of daughters, she shouted in Chinese. Those who are obedient and those who follow their own mind!” (Tan, 153) From the mother’s perspective the only way Jing-Mei can avoid pain is to be obedient to her mother. Her mother believes she knows what is best for Jing-Mei and the best way to obtain fulfilled hopes and dreams is to listen and follow her advice and

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